Friday, March 9, 2018

2018 Passive solar greenhouse tours

Join the 2018 tours of M R Gardens’ one-of-a-kind passive solar greenhouse!

Saturdays, April 7, April 14, June 2 and June 9 at 1 p.m.
441 Onteora Blvd., Asheville

v Why build a passive solar greenhouse instead of a typical one?
v Why is it shaped differently?
v What are all the barrels for?
v Why does it produce high quality plants?

These questions and more will be answered.
Owner Megan Riley in front of the passive solar greenhouse. Photos by Vickie Burick
With only solar gain to heat it and manual vents to cool it, M R Gardens’ 800 square foot greenhouse maintains ideal growing conditions despite wide fluctuations in outside temperatures. January 2018 put the greenhouse to the test with more than two weeks of outside lows in the single digits or mid-twenties. Yet inside the house, overnight temperatures remained above 40F, which is suitable for the plants in the greenhouse at that time. In more typical weather, the nightly minimum is rarely below 50F, especially as the days lengthen. We could further increase overnight temperatures by sealing up cracks around vents. The building’s design also prevents the interior from overheating, as we ventilate it even on these cold winter days to keep it below 90F in sunny weather.

Inside the greenhouse.
The tour is typically 40 minutes. We ask for $5 per person and appreciate any additional contribution if the tour was especially helpful for you. Please RSVP to or 828.333.4151. The April 7 tour, which includes a brief walk through the native and edible landscape, is part of the Asheville New In Town Meetup Group. If you choose this date, reserve soon as it's almost full. If these dates don't work for you, we also offer tours for individuals or small groups at pre-arranged times. See our online store.