Setting up our simple cheap hoop house greenhouse for seed starting. This PVC hoop house cold frame works well for us and it was easy to build, here is the video of us building our the hoop house. The hoop house greenhouse allows you to get a head start on planting vegetables and seed starting. We started this in February to start warming the soil. This can be made for free if you find some scrap leftover lumber and PVC pipe. This plan uses short lengths of PVC pipe, which you may find laying around your yard, or your neighbor's yard.
My hoop house plans for this mini greenhouse are simple. Some 2x4s, some PVC pipe, and a piece of plywood. The thermal actuated vent keeps the hoop house from overheating. Link to buy the thermal greenhouse vents
I use 3 mil clear plastic from the hardware store, it lasts a few years with care. I hang our mini greenhouse on the back of a shed when i am not using it. To attach the plastic to it, I fold the plastic over on itself and use lots of staples. You could also use a piece of lath or thin wood to hold the plastic to the wood. For the ends, I staple the plastic to the plywood end with the thermal vent and then cut off the excess plastic. For the other end of the cold frame hoop house, I simply bunch up the plastic and staple it to the 2x4.
After a few days on your vegetable bed, this portable greenhouse will start warming the soil. Its amazing how warm it is inside the hoop house compared to the outside temperature. We have a video showing how a hoop house greenhouse can defrost your garden soil coming soon.
In the video, the plywood I used for the end of the greenhouse, OSB, is not the best kind of plywood for outdoor uses. Use a better piece of plywood and paint it with a few coats of latex paint, it will last much longer if its painted.
Click here to watch our How To Build a Hoop House Cold Frame Video
Click here to watch How to build a cold frame video.
Learn how to grow food year round, read Eliot Coleman's Four Season Harvest book and Nikki Jabour's Year Round Vegetable Gardener.
Do you use a hoop house greenhouse? let us know comments or questions below:
I enjoy watching your videos & I think I will try building your style of hoop house. One question: How do you (or do you have to) deal with ground hog invasion? No matter what I do here in NJ, they burrow under everything and eat everything. They even sharpen their teeth on my shed & garage, & have chewed through beams to get around rocks I've stuffed in their holes. I have almost given up on planting at all. I have a big yard, but find my only success with summer gardening is to keep the plants in portable pots & try to make ground hog deterents. I'd love a hoop house, but they would definitely destroy it. Do you have any suggestions for a remedy? They are worse than the deer.
Eric Gunnar Rochow
@Barb, wow, I know nothing of how to deal with ground hogs. I can see how that is incredibly frustrating to deal with.
I don't know if this will work but we have moles really bad here so for our gardens we dig down and lay chicken wire, recover, then plant as normal. It seems to work the best for us so far.
is the Automatic foundation Vent still working?
Eric Gunnar Rochow
@austin, yes, it works well.i have two of the hoop houses on the garden right now. thx, eric.