Category Archives for "Buildings"


If you not have the opportunity to collect water from a river or a lake, it may be worthwhile to use rainwater. It is a good investment if you use a lot of water in the garden.

If you not have the opportunity to collect water from a river or a lake, it may be worthwhile to use rainwater. It is a good investment if you use a lot of water in the garden.

You can also use rainwater for car wash, toilet flush and laundry

There are good reasons to collect rainwater:

  • It reduces the consumption of drinking water
  • You save money.

A barrel is the most common way to collect rainwater. It is both easy to find space in the garden, and it is easy to use and maintain.

With a barrel, you can save money by recycling the collected water for watering the garden and for cleaning.

If you would like to use the rainwater for laundry and flushing, it will require a major investment in a rainwater system.


You collect the rainwater on your roof. If your roof is suitable, you can recycle the water for:

  • Garden Irrigation
  • Cleaning
  • Toilet flush and laundry

Although rainwater is good for many things, you should avoid using it for drinking water.

 You must not use rainwater as drinking water because insects, soil dust and bird droppings can enter the rainwater tank. Although the water seems clean, there may be bacteria in the water.

You have to be careful about watering vegetables with rainwater. You should not water strawberries, lettuce and other vegetables that you eat raw, especially not on the parts of the vegetable or fruit you eat. That is because the water may be contaminated.

If the plants only absorb water from the soil, such as tomato and cucumber plants, you can use rainwater. The vegetables do not absorb the bacteria through the soil.

Size of the container

If you only have to use the rainwater to water the garden plants and wash the car, a rainwater barrel is big enough for your needs. However, if you want to use the water to flush the toilet and wash clothes you need a rainwater system.


The easiest way to collect rainwater is by using a rainwater barrel. It is easy to set up and makes it easy to collect water. They can typically contain between 190 and 400 liters of water depending on the shape and model you choose. It has a drain tap that you can use when filling a watering can or bucket.

You connect the barrel to a downpipe so that the rain from the roof runs from the downpipe into the barrel. You should connect it with an overflow. In this way, the excess water does not flow over and out of the soil, but instead back into the drainpipe and further into the sewer.

Therefore, remember to raise the barrel above the ground level so that it is possible to drain the water. You can direct the water to various places in the garden by connecting a hose to the tap on the barrel

This video show how to make an install

If you want a bigger system then look here.

If you want to use the rainwater for toilet and laundry, it is a good idea to establish a buried rainwater system. It should be large enough to cover 3-4 weeks of consumption (2-4 cubic meters).

A rainwater system is a complete rainwater system, which consists of a buried rainwater tank, a filter insert, a pump, pipe and a water outlet above the surface.

If you want to read more look here.


Be aware of what kind of roof you have before you collect the rainwater. The roof itself can contaminate the rainwater. Below you can see which roofs you should not collect and use rainwater from.

  • Zinc roof or copper roof
  • Asbestos-containing roof
  • Roof with roofing felt


You should completely empty the tank and clean it in the spring so that it is ready to collect water. You should do the same when winter approaches. That way, you avoid the rainwater barrel bursting or getting frostbite in the winter.

You should also remember to deconnect the barrel from the drainpipe, if there is a risk of frost in wintertime.

When you have to empty your rainwater tank for the winter However, be aware that you do not empty your rainwater barrel too close to your house as it can cause moisture or water damage.


Greenhouses offer the opportunity to extend the season for your vegetables.

With a greenhouse, you quickly experience the joy of extending the summer season. You can enjoy the sun in the greenhouse, and the plants benefit from the extra heat and the long warm season. Vegetables can be grown early, and you can harvest crops over time.

A greenhouse also allows you to expand the number of varieties you can grow. It is suitable for many different types of crops, but will be especially suitable for the type that thrives best in a warm climate, such as:

  • Tomato
  • Cucumber
  • Bell pepper
  • Chili
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Melon
  • Grape

In addition, you can use the greenhouse when you are germinating seeds, and as a workplace for transplantation etc.

If you have a greenhouse, remember that:

  • Clean and wash windows, shrubs and surfaces before using the greenhouse after winter.
  • Change the soil due to the risk of pest and fungal infestation.
  • Wait to grow delicate plants in an unheated greenhouse.


Attach the greenhouse to a wooden or steel base or to a molded foundation. A wooden or steel base is the easy and quick solution. If you want a larger greenhouse, it should have a molded foundation.

You should place the greenhouse so it gets plenty of sun all day.

You can take advantage of the light shade found under smaller trees. Then you will be free to shade the greenhouse with curtains or paint the windows. If you have a tree that pops out relatively late, the greenhouse will get plenty of sun all spring.

A purchased greenhouse typically consists of frames with glass, which are assembled for wall and roof modules. The vast majority of greenhouses are made of aluminum profiles and frames.

You can get plain glass greenhouses, which is the most common. You can also get greenhouses with tempered glass or plastic sheets. It is more expensive, but also has extra resistance in stormy weather and resists hard bumps from rocks, balls and fallen branches.

If you buy a finished greenhouse, the price depends on the size and quality

A good and cheap solution is to build a greenhouse of recycled materials, which you can either find at recycling stations or buy online. For example, you can buy windows, frames and coatings.

Old windows with wooden frames and rafters may be worn for the home, but still very useful for a greenhouse. However, this project requires do-it-yourself skills.

Shape and size.

Most greenhouses have vertical sides. The roof usually has a slope of approx. 30 degrees, so the condensation on the inside of the glass can drain off and heavy snow will slide down. However, you can also get greenhouses in many forms

Greenhouses with one-sided roof pitch. These greenhouses are suitable for placement on a house wall, limbs etc.

It is also important that you choose a greenhouse with a good height.

In a high greenhouse, the air is more comfortable; it does not become so heavy due to temperature and humidity. In addition, there is better ventilation in a greenhouse with good height. 150 centimeters will be a suitable height at the sides of the greenhouse, and about 2 meters in the middle.


You can choose many different accessories for your greenhouse.

If you want to grow germinating seeds, it can be difficult in the early spring to create the right conditions throughout the greenhouse. Here breeding boxes are a good supplement because you can easily get a high temperature and humidity in them.

Ventilation in the greenhouse is essential for the well-being of the plants. The greenhouse temperature should preferably vary between a daytime temperature of 25 and a nighttime temperature of 15 degrees. Windows that can open must correspond to at least 30 percent of the floor area.

You can buy window openers that open automatically when the temperature or humidity gets too high.

You can install a window shutter in the sides of a greenhouse. It provides a good even flow of air to the plants and adjusts the air exchange in the greenhouse.

The shade net can be a good solution to keep out the sun’s rays. The more perpendicular the rays hit the glass; the easier the rays will pass through, so a shade mesh will benefit most in the roof of the greenhouse.

You can install various semi or fully automatic irrigation systems in the greenhouse.

Root cellar and pantry

Cooling cabinet or pantry

You design a pantry for long-term storage of food and beverages in larger quantities than is otherwise possible in your kitchen. It is especially interesting for those who grow a large part of the fruit or vegetables the family eats during the winter season. Finally, the obvious advantage of a virtual room is that you can arrange it solely for the purpose of food storage.

If you want to create a pantry in your home yourself, you must remember four basic rules. The room must not have windows; it should preferably face north, well-insulated walls – not only facing the garden, but also towards the other rooms of the house to avoid heat exchange – and good ventilation.

The most optimal is to establish a valve or limb, which you can adjust according to the weather. For example, in the summer it is best to have it completely closed in the heat during the day, but open in the cooler night air

Make the room by being dark and cool – but frost-free. Furthermore, you should secure it against mice and rats. Place the room so you can maintain a stable temperature during the winter months – between 5 and 10 degrees. This is the optimum temperature for food that does not necessarily need to be refrigerated or frozen. This relative coolness slows down bacterial growth and other biological degradation processes and allows the durability of a wide range of food.

In addition, the space should hold a humidity percentage of around 90, as it prevents drying of vegetables, root vegetables and onions.

Nature can become your new refrigerator

Save electricity as well as CO2 by cooling your vegetables, fruit, juice and jam with the help of nature.

If you dig approx. 1 meter into the ground, there is a temperature of 7-8 degrees all year round.

Outside pantry

You bury a meter in the ground on an area of ​​ three m2, and then lay a layer of seashells or pebbles as insulation at the bottom. Then cast a floor of concrete. You build walls up to man-height with brick and insulate the top.

Coolness utilizes cold from the ground because you have buried the cabinet below 90 cm. You maintain that temperature by creating circulation in the room by making a pipe that goes into the ground and comes up through a chimney with a built-in grate.

Make sure you place your pantry in the shade, with the door against north, allowing as little sunlight, and heat as possible, when you steps in to the pantry.

Make a root cellar

A root cellar is slightly larger and can protect fruits and vegetables from frost in winter, while keeping it cool in summer.

When deciding to build a root cellar, there are many factors to consider. First, consider where you want to place it.

If you have a slope to dig into it is perfect, otherwise, you have to dig down the root cellar. It is important that it be above ground level to avoid flooding. You allso lay a drainage layer in the floor so that there is no water

You will need to dig a 150 cm deep hole at 4 x 8 meters, and wall it up with stones at the sides and bottom. You can wall the sides 50 cm higher up and close the basement at the top with a slanted door. You must establish two holes with meshes in each of the gables – to ensure ventilation and keep animals out.

You can use the cellar all year round for storage of juice, wine, beer, jam etc., as a good cellar in the summer usually stays below 15 °. For storage of fruits and vegetables during the winter months, it must be 100% frost-free with a temperature between 0–4 ° C and a relative humidity of 97–99%. It is best to have a lock so you not let the outside air in directly.

Flat roof increases the risk of condensation water dripping onto the stored crops. A curved roof is better. You do not have to insulate against moisture, as there must be almost 100% moisture. To save the soil layer above the soil cellar, you can insulate the part of the cellar that is above ground

The ventilation must be good. In the winter, the fresh air must be warmed by the soil and in the summer, it must be cooled down by the soil. You can achieve this by passing the fresh air into the basement through a 20–25 m long pipe, which is buried in the ground at a depth of 1 m. Place the ventilation vent in the ceiling.

For some plans you can look at this site.

Storages of vegetables

Crop General Conditions Temperature, °C Temperature, °F Relative Humidity, %
Apples Cold and moist. Do not store with vegetables. 0 to 5 32 to 40 80 to 90
Beans, Cool and dry 0 to 10 32 to 50 60 to 70
Beets Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Brussels sprouts Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Cabbage Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Cabbage, Chinese Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Carrots Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Cauliflower Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Celeriac Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Celery Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Garlic Cool and dry 0 to 2 32 to 35 60 to 70
Horseradish Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Kale Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Leeks Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Onions Cool and dry 0 to 2 32 to 35 60 to 70
Parsnips Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Pears Cold and moist. Do not store with vegetables. 0 to 5 32 to 40 80 to 90
Potatoes Cold and moist 3 to 5 38 to 40 80 to 90
Potatoes, Sweet Warm and moist Not below 10 Not below 50 80 to 90
Pumpkins Warm and dry 10 to 13 50 to 55 60 to 75
Radish, winter Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95
Squash, Winter Warm and dry 10 to 13 50 to 55 60 to 75
Tomatoes Warm and moist Not below 10 Not below 50 80 to 90
Turnip Cold and very moist 0 to 5 32 to 40 90 to 95