Learn how to build a variety of season extension structures, and discover construction techniques for specialized features. You will find high tunnel construction plans, hoop house design and other high tunnel farming information.
The Basics of Season Extension Structures
Constructing a High Tunnel
This Rutgers University website includes a 61-image demonstration of high tunnel construction, with detailed information on site selection, design, cost and crop management.
Constructing a Low-Cost High Tunnel
Specs, diagrams and photos of high tunnel construction, by Utah State University Cooperative Extension. Download File (2.57 MB)
Design and Construction of a High Tunnel in West Virginia
Detailed information on hoop house or high tunnel construction, with specific considerations for West Virginia.Download File (794.24 kB)
This manual on using high tunnels or hoop houses for season extension includes case studies, a supplier list and chapters on marketing, site selection, construction and types, and soil, pest and environmental management.Download File (2.39 MB)
Kansas State High Tunnel Video Series
This video series was developed by Kansas State Research and Extension, and includes segments on the following topics related to commercial high tunnel or hoop house production:
Overview | Design | What to Plant | Basic Management Considerations | Intensive Management | Resources
Expanding Winter Harvest and Sales for New England Vegetable Crops
This University of Massachusetts website offers resources on winter vegetable crop storage, marketing and low-cost season extension through structures such as hoop houses and low tunnels.
Walk-In Coolers for Winter Storage
Resources for farmers interested in on-farm winter storage options for season extension. Each resource offers a case study for a specific facility construction, and both outline important considerations for a winter storage facility.
Winter Storage Options for the Northeast
To help farmers in the Philadelphia area learn about various winter storage options, the nonprofit Fair Food conducted site visits of well-established winter storage operations in Pennsylvania, Vermont and Quebec.Download File (1.07 MB)
Other Design Considerations
Comparing Four Ultra-Low-Cost Season Extension Structures on a Missouri Farm
This project compared winter production using four structures: EZ Build-n-Gro Cold Frames (Farmtek); cattle panel greenhouses; modified low tunnels; and standard small cold frames.Download File (1.39 MB)
New York Farmer Uses Hanging Gutters to Utilize Overhead Space in Hoop House
This project looked at increasing the productivity and cost effectiveness of growing more crops in a hoop house by utilizing the overhead space through innovative design.Download File (1.32 MB)
Rainwater Catchment from a High Tunnel for Irrigation Use
This Iowa State University video/fact sheet describes how to build a system to catch, store and reuse the rainwater for high tunnel irrigation.
High Tunnel Equipment Suppliers
An extensive list of high tunnel structure and equipment suppliers is available at Hightunnels.org.
Additional Resources on High Tunnel Structures
The following resources, which were not funded or produced by SARE, contain valuable information.
Building a Passive Solar Greenhouse (a University of Missouri webpage with design specs and other information)
Construction resources and equipment suppliers from Hightunnels.org
Greenhouse Site Selection (online article from Rodale Institute)
Hoop House How-To (a website of The Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture)
How to Build a Low-Cost Hoophouse, Hmong version and Spanish version (a video by the Spring Rose Growers Cooperative, of Madison, Wisc.)
Properties and Recommended Conditions for the Long-Term Storage of Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (a University of California, Davis resource)