Greenhouse Management Project Questions

Asked January 23, 2020, 7:34 PM EST

Hi, I'm taking a course in greenhouse management to get a leg up when I transfer to OSU this fall, and I have a few questions for my term project. What are the standards when it comes to greenhouse construction in Oregon? Like the exterior, glazing, heating, flooring, size, and things like that? To clarify, I've attached my project guideline, and this greenhouse would be a small to medium operation, close to or within city limits, and focused on producing tomatoes and bell peppers during the warm season, and lettuce and carrots during the cold season. I thought it would be best to ask someone that's been in the greenhouse industry for a while, and knows a lot of it's subtleties.

Marion County Oregon

1 Response

Hi, that sounds like an interesting project. I did not find any Extension publications on greenhouse construction in Oregon.

However, I found this paper from Purdue University on Greenhouse Construction that might give you some of the information that you need. The next source is to read is from University of Massachusetts Amherst, Selecting and Building a Commercial Greenhouse. Keep in mind that both of these are from east coast universities so you need to read the Oregon Specialty Structure Code which provides legal details for Oregon builders.

You could also contact Oregon Valley Greenhouses in Aurora. The Capitol Press wrote an interesting article in 2017 prior to the annual NW Ag. Show, “Oregon Valley Greenhouse Provides Advice on Structures”.

Another company to contact is Charley’s Greenhouse and Garden in Mt. Vernon, Washington. They sell greenhouses of all sizes.

For the crops that you are theoretically growing, you could get by with a poly film covering with single wall poly carbonate at the ends. These are also the least expensive to build. The side walls should roll up to provide more ventilation in summer. You have to decide whether you want to plant directly in the ground or if you want raised beds of some sort. Or are you planning to grow crops in pots? Keep in mind that in the gardening world, greenhouse space is a premium so use space wisely.

Typically pathways are either graveled or concrete. It all depends on the planned usage for the greenhouse.

This should get you headed in the direction that will give you answers that you need. Good luck with your project.