Geodesic Domes As A Green House Design

David Trammel's picture

I was surfing around and ran across an ad/article about a backyard patio addition, a clear geodesic dome. Here's a pic of it.

Neat toy, but what got my attention was this quote: "And during the winter months this greenhouse will require 40 percent less heat than your average greenhouse because the geodesic shape helps keep it warm."

The ad at Amazon elaborated:
MAXIMUM SOLAR GAIN - Sunlight is always transmitted at right angles throughout the day for four seasons. Please allow up to 3 weeks for the wrinkles to dissipate in the igloo cover.
OPTIMAL AIR FLOW- Excellent air flow is maintained even in warm, still weather conditions. The heat inside is distributed evenly at all points.
UNIFORM TEMPERATURE- The geodesic dome form is superior to conventional shaped rooms in sustaining better airflow and a uniform temperature inside.
WIND AND SNOW RESISTANCE- The geodesic form of the dome allows for the most robust design possible to withstand the strong wind (up to 31 mi/h) or lying snow conditions (max. 90 lbs).

Now I plan on a green house in my backyard, but plan on attaching it to the South face of my workshop/office and having a deep concrete wall on its backside (North Side), which will be painted black for Winter (but with white covers for Summer) because I want to maximize the use of the square footage of the yard. In a bigger area and where you had less that ideal South facing, something like a domed greenhouse might make sense.

Unfortunately this unit doesn't appear to be well made for the over a thousand dollars price tag, from some of the comments.

What I did find in the related items list was a kit of the hubs to built domes:

Hubs Geodesic Dome Kit

Price is around $160US and allows customizable sizing. Figuring out a way to cover the panels in transparent plastic might be a chore but doable. Hub also has a PDF that explains how to use their kit.

Hubs' Assembly Guide

The manual is a good tutorial on basic dome building too.

Blueberry's picture

In my youth everyone was thinking this was the shape of the future. They were in The Whole Earth Catalog and talked about in Mother Earth News. So I decided to build one using plywood, 1X2 furring strips and greenhouse poly paper. It was very strong I could pull my self off the floor in the middle. The waste of material was just too much. Would never build another one.