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Retrofitting greenhouse into run-in or barn...possible?

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  • Retrofitting greenhouse into run-in or barn...possible?

    We have two wholesale nurseries near us, and every time I pass by, I look at the greenhouses and wonder if you could make a barn out of them.

    These aren't glass or fiberglass greenhouses, they look more like tunnels of plastic sheeting built on a half-tubular frame. If you didn't enclose the ends, would they still get hot?

    Just playing with the idea, just in case one of the nurseries wants to get rid of one.
    Some nights I stay up cashing in my bad luck; some nights I call it a draw. -- fun.

    My favorite podcasts: Overdue, The Black Tapes, Tanis, Rabbits, How Did This Get Made?, Up and Vanished.

  • #2
    I have a family nursery, with five of the plastic greenhouses, and let me tell you....even during December/January, by the middle of the day, with no extra heat, an enclosed greenhouse can easily get up to 80*. In the summer, ours, with doors wide open at either end (we have full-sized barn doors, not just man doors) get to be over 100*. They are meant to trap heat!

    What you could consider doing is buying the frame, and then covering it with a darker colored tarp, like most of the portable garages that people use for horse shelters. (Or why not just get one of those, for $200?)

    Also, what you have to consider with the rounded styles is that there is a LOT of unusable space...it would not be efficient for horse keeping. I'm 5'2'', and I have to be a good four or five feet away from the wall before I can stand fully upright underneath the curve. The portable garage/horse run-ins you find have much more upright sides than the average greenhouse, so that there is less wasted space.

    Comment


    • #3
      Also...the commercial ones are quite pricey. The frame for our 30' x 100' was around $8k...and that was a few years ago. They are a pain to put up (relatively simple design, they just take a lot of work and manpower) and a pain to take down. Any used one that you find will most likely require that the buyer take it down....and they don't sell quickly because most times that hassle of that is not worth it, and people just buy a new one!

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Ah, those were things I was looking to learn. May just be easier to go the traditional barn route. I did think about them not having much room where they curved down. I just drive by these nurseries every day, and I always wonder if it would be feasible....sounds like not so much.

        Thanks!
        Some nights I stay up cashing in my bad luck; some nights I call it a draw. -- fun.

        My favorite podcasts: Overdue, The Black Tapes, Tanis, Rabbits, How Did This Get Made?, Up and Vanished.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by cllane1 View Post
          I just drive by these nurseries every day, and I always wonder if it would be feasible....sounds like not so much.

          Thanks!
          Nah, not so much. My ducks sure do love "moving to Florida" for the winter though, instead of staying in their cold outdoor pen!

          Something to think about, if you're not ready for wood/metal, is something like these:


          http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...112&zmap=42211

          http://www.portablegaragedepot.com/i...51451&catid=70

          There are many members of the board that use them with quite some success, even in cold windy places! Provided that they are properly anchored (and some suggest plywood along the insides) I have seen them work quite well as horse shelters. The biggest complaint seems to be that the tarps, just due to natural wear and quality, need to be replaced every couple of years.

          There are many different prices/styles/companies/qualities to consider, but the tarp shelters are popular when you're on a budget/are moving soon/etc.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by cllane1 View Post
            Ah, those were things I was looking to learn. May just be easier to go the traditional barn route. I did think about them not having much room where they curved down. I just drive by these nurseries every day, and I always wonder if it would be feasible....sounds like not so much.

            Thanks!
            Wait.... I thought you said arena before barn!?!?!? ;-)
            www.foxwoodfarms.biz
            "There are no stupid questions, but there are a LOT of inquisitive idiots."
            -Member of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique!
            http://community.webshots.com/user/wlrottge

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by GoForAGallop View Post
              I have a family nursery, with five of the plastic greenhouses, and let me tell you....even during December/January, by the middle of the day, with no extra heat, an enclosed greenhouse can easily get up to 80*. In the summer, ours, with doors wide open at either end (we have full-sized barn doors, not just man doors) get to be over 100*. They are meant to trap heat!
              Sounds like heaven. I want a greenhouse... to grow food in, not keep horses in.

              So if it gets up to 80* midday in winter, how much does it cool off at night? Like when it's 20* below...

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by greysandbays View Post
                Sounds like heaven. I want a greenhouse... to grow food in, not keep horses in.

                So if it gets up to 80* midday in winter, how much does it cool off at night? Like when it's 20* below...
                Well, we don't really get -20* temps around here often (Thank goodness!) but we did have a short period where our HIGHS for the DAY were around 15*. Provided that there was sun during those days, the greenhouses got up to around 50 or 60*, just by their own power. At night, when the temps were around zero, there was enough residual heat from the day to keep everything above freezing.

                On one of the nights where there hadn't been any sun the day before, there was just the tiniest coating of ice on my duck's water.

                We don't, but one of our fellow area farmers puts their greenhouses to work all winter (most of ours are empty from October to about the beginning of Feb, when they start getting filled up with seedlings) and fills them up with cold weather greens--cabbages, broccoli, salad greens, kale, etc. He makes a pretty tidy profit because he doesn't bother to heat the greenhouses at all, and all of those cold weather plants are pretty fast-growing. So all he does is plant them in the fall, and then just harvest them all winter, in space that was essentially just going to waste. Then in the spring, once the greenhouses are getting too hot for those cold weather crops, he starts filling up his houses with flowers! It's a pretty good system.

                Comment


                • #9
                  There is a farm catalog I get, I believe it is Farm-Tek, butI may be wrongthat has some shaped like that that they sell for livestck housing. I like them, but I tend to think outside the box.They come in all different sizes.

                  Personally, I want another chicken house like the ones we had growing up. We cleaned it out and built stalls and rode down the center. Someone was telling me that the more recently built ones are too short, but we didn't have any problems with all heights of riders in them on good sized horses-15-16.3 hh. That is short for some of y'alls critters, but just fine for mine, lol.

                  Also, there is someone on here, and I can't remember who, who uses those carport sheds and puts 2 stalls in them, with a small storage area. She posted pix, and it was so cute.
                  http://community.webshots.com/album/548368465RfewoU[/url]

                  She may not have changed the stars from their courses, but she loved a good man, and she rode good horses….author unknown

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by Gnalli View Post
                    Personally, I want another chicken house like the ones we had growing up. We cleaned it out and built stalls and rode down the center. Someone was telling me that the more recently built ones are too short, but we didn't have any problems with all heights of riders in them on good sized horses-15-16.3 hh. That is short for some of y'alls critters, but just fine for mine, lol.
                    I've thought about chicken houses too! That's cool that you built a barn out of one.
                    Some nights I stay up cashing in my bad luck; some nights I call it a draw. -- fun.

                    My favorite podcasts: Overdue, The Black Tapes, Tanis, Rabbits, How Did This Get Made?, Up and Vanished.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Oh that's a good idea using plastic greenhouses for fowl in winter.

                      I used to board with someone who had a nursery at home on several acres. She put up a stall sized shed that she set up as a tiny barn and used to bring her retired saddlebred home on some weekends for "sleepovers." At around the same time we started building our barn at home, she had one built on their property too. She brought her horse home for good, another boarder/friend moved her retired mare there too and they have 4 boarders and a small lesson business going. And a dog training business in the loft of the barn. (the barn is stunning, nicer than many homes) I always wondered why they didn't use one of their huge greenhouses in winter for an indoor. They have 4 IIRC...all huge. I'd guess at least 200' long and maybe 75' wide?
                      You jump in the saddle,
                      Hold onto the bridle!
                      Jump in the line!
                      ...Belefonte

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by cllane1 View Post
                        We have two wholesale nurseries near us, and every time I pass by, I look at the greenhouses and wonder if you could make a barn out of them.

                        These aren't glass or fiberglass greenhouses, they look more like tunnels of plastic sheeting built on a half-tubular frame. If you didn't enclose the ends, would they still get hot?

                        Just playing with the idea, just in case one of the nurseries wants to get rid of one.

                        those bastards get very hot in the summer! even with fans.

                        But

                        they are pretty sturdy, you can put shade cloth over them in the summer, keeps it a little bit cool.

                        You can probably install a misting zone...

                        And then again, in the heat of the day the horses probably seek shade.

                        (I wonder how a solid cover would work in terms of temperature...)

                        Comment

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