1. My Introduction to Chinese Greenhouses
Early Experiences with Greenhouse Growing
Building a Four-Season Greenhouse
The Chinese Greenhouse
Meeting Dr. Sanjun Gu and The Real Chinese Greenhouse
What's this Book about?
2. What's Wrong with Conventional
Shortcomings of Conventional Greenhouses
3. What Makes the Chinese Greenhouse so
A Closer Look
The Advantages of Earth-Sheltering
How Earth-Sheltering Actually Works
A Brief History of the Chinese Greenhouse
Evolutionary Changes to Chinese Greenhouse Design
A Chinese Farming Success Story
Do Chinese Greenhouses Really Work?
Chinese Greenhouses and All-Season Greenhouses
4. Building a Chinese Greenhouse: Site Selection,
Excavation, and Drainage
Above Ground or Underground: That's the Question
Selecting and Excavating Your Site
Getting it Right: Proper Orientation
Proper Drainage: Protecting Your Greenhouse from Water Infiltration
Water, Water, Everywhere, and You can be Sure It Will Find a Way In
5. Thermal Mass, Framing, Glazing, and
Framing Your Greenhouse
Roof Slope: What's the Optimum Angle?
Glazing or Plastic
How Much Glazing do you Need?
6. Improving Performance: Daytime Internal Heat
Daily Internal Heat Banking
7. Improving Performance: Daily Heat Banking with a
Solar Hot Air System
Using a Solar Hot Air Collector to Bank Heat
Where Can I Purchase a Solar Hot Air Collector?
Mounting a Solar Hot Air Collector
How does a Solar Hot Air System Work?
What's the Proper Tilt Angle?
Mounting a Solar Hot Air Collector on a Rack
Controlling Hot Air Systems
Build Your Own Solar Hot Air Collector
8. Improving Performance: Daily Heat Banking with Solar
Hot Water Systems
What Is a Solar Hot Water System?
Drainback Solar Hot Water Systems
Pump-Driven Glycol-Based Solar Hot Water Systems
Which System Should You Use?
Evacuated Tube Solar Hot Water Collectors
Installing a Solar Hot Water System
Conclusion: How about Long-Term Heat Storage?
9. Improving Performance: Long-Term (Seasonal) Heat
Long-term Heat Banking: A New Idea?
Long Term or Seasonal Heat Banking
Heat Banking in Earth-Sheltered Buildings like the Chinese Greenhouse
Active Annual Heat Storage
Which Way to Go?
Daily Internal Heat Recovery System
Solar Hot Air System
Seasonal Heat Storage with a Solar Hot Water System
Conclusion: An Invitation to Share
10. Battling the Heat: Summertime
Retiring the Greenhouse for the Summer
Continuing to grow in a Chinese Greenhouse in the Summer
Quit Bugging Me
11. Getting it Right: Designing Climate
Climate Battery Design and Construction
Climate Batteries and Cooling
12. Supplementing Solar Input: LED Lighting
Do You Need to Supplement Lighting?
What Kind of Lights Work Best?
When do you Need Supplemental Lighting?
DLI: One More Thing About Lighting
Determining Daily Light Integral
13. Building My Chinese Greenhouse: A Pictorial
Site Selection and Preparation
Building the Thermal Mass Wall
Building Rammed Earth Tire Walls
Earth-Cooling Tube Installation
Waterproofing Mass Walls
Framing the Greenhouse
Installing the Roof
Mudding the Walls
Exterior Insulation and Backfilling
Insulating the Interior Walls and Roof
Revegetating the Berm
We Made It!
About the Author
About New Society Publishers
Grow vegetables year-round in a greenhouse powered only by solar energy
Dan Chiras, PhD, is the author of 38 books, including Solar Electricity Basics, Power from the Wind, Power from the Sun, and The Homeowners Guide to Renewable Energy. He has taught workshops on solar electricity and passive solar heating for the Evergreen Institute, the American Solar Energy Society, the Colorado Renewable Energy Society, the Missouri Solar Energy Industries Association, and the University of Colorado. Over the past 45 years, Dan has published articles on natural building, green building, solar electricity, passive solar design, self-sufficiency, and sustainability in publications such as Solar Today, Home Power, and Mother Earth News. He has installed numerous solar electric and wind systems in Missouri and has lived on solar electricity since 1996. He lives on a solar- and wind-powered farm in Gerald, MO.