green house/tortoise house

FarrellFam6

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We are designing a greenhouse, and also need to build an outdoor home for our growing tortoise... so we thought maybe we can combine the two?!! Has anyone done this? My goal is to make a traditional greenhouse, out of windows (we already have a bunch saved), and lumber which we have milled ourselves. It will be fully wired and plumbed for whatever electrical needs we will have.. We live in Washington State, so the fall and winter and spring are not ideal temps for a Sulcata...

If you could build a dream shelter, that doubled as a greenhouse what would it include?

What is the best flooring? We have considered concrete... or drain rock... there will be an area with his lamps and a door to wander out to the garden in good weather... but what else should I consider?

Thanks!
 

Canadian Mojo

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The cost of heating a glass building to Sulcata friendly temperatures in the winter.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, sufficient venting and cooling capacity to keep a glass building in the right temperature range during the summer.

I'd hit up local gardening forums, relevant youtube vids, and possibly the local ag. extension office to see what things work well for your area.
 

Yvonne G

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I have an extensive cactus/succulent collection - some in the ground, but an awful lot in pots. Because it freezes here during the winter in the Central Valley of California, I have a couple of small greenhouses to move the plants into for the winter.

My experience with greenhouses is that they are terribly hot during the summer and just as cold during the winter as the outside temperature. I have an oil filled radiator-type electric heater that I have on at night for the plants, but it never gets real warm in there, even with the heater on 'high.' But it does keep the frost out of the greenhouse.

I don't think it would work to keep a sulcata warm enough in the winter.
 

wellington

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I agree with Yvonne. It would be very expensive to heat too 80 for a sulcata. However, you could build a heated insulated shed that was connected to the greenhouse by a door. During the sunny days when the greenhouse was being naturally heated, you could allow him to roam in it. Then back to his heated shed when the sun isn't out and for night time.
 

Maro2Bear

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I’d start with something like this:


or this

 
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FarrellFam6

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I agree with Yvonne. It would be very expensive to heat too 80 for a sulcata. However, you could build a heated insulated shed that was connected to the greenhouse by a door. During the sunny days when the greenhouse was being naturally heated, you could allow him to roam in it. Then back to his heated shed when the sun isn't out and for night time.


thank you all for your very good thoughts! This sounds like the most doable plan for us! an attached heated insulated room for him
 

Tim Carlisle

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I did it with mine. About a 20-30 degree difference when the sun is out.
 

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jaizei

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I think it's very possible, if it's designed with the tortoise in mind from the start. What size greenhouse are you planning? I'd understand using the wood & glass from an enviro perspective, but I think in general it's easier to make a larger/ish greenhouse from steel pipe and poly (or realistically double poly for insulation). There are other ideas in the video below.


 

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