How to Build a Greenhouse Geodesic Dome

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Building a greenhouse geodesic dome is time consuming but not too difficult if you take accurate measurements and have a generous workspace. You need at least one assistant to help with the cutting, measuring and the actual assembly of your greenhouse geodesic dome.

  • The dome can be built with metal, PVC pipe, wood or bamboo. PVC pipe is used in this example, but the design and assembly are the same no matter what material you choose. Remember that PVC pipe has a short UV life, so the pipe needs painted or covered with rust-o-leum to keep it from becoming brittle.

  • Calculate the size of the greenhouse to determine the amount of materials you need to buy. DesertDomes has a wonderful tool for calculating triangles and stuts.

  • Search for designs. Geodesic domes are comprised of two different sized triangles and one base. You can easily adjust the height of the greenhouse dome by building the base on a taller platform.

  • Plan for ventilation and watering. Greenhouse domes need to have air vents and sturdy frames that can support a watering system and a constant humidity level. Dirt, gravel or treated wood flooring works best, and you can build a dome light enough to move every so often to a clean patch of ground.

  • Purchase the plastic for the greenhouse at almost any greenhouse supply store. Buy plastic with a high UV rating, especially if constructing the dome out of PVC pipe, as it becomes brittle from the sunlight. You can secure the plastic with weights, or build a dome where the plastic is hung from the inside of the dome. There are many kits on the market, so examine several for a wide variety of geodesic greenhouse domes.

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