Hampshire Bioshelter

Enfield Solar Greenhouse

In 1979 a group of students interested in aquaculture, art, and growing their own food constructed a greenhouse attached to one of the mods (apartments) in Enfield House.

Because the environment was very humid, the wood eventually rotted; the greenhouse was replaced in 1992, again by students. This greenhouse was far more permanent, as it was made out of glass and aluminum. It had goshen stone raised beds, a waterfall, koi tank, and hydroponic basil. In 2008 the greenhouse had to be taken down for structural reasons as part of the renovation of Enfield House.

From 2009 to 2011, the students residing in the Greenhouse Mod worked closely with the College administration to design and build a new greenhouse, which opened its doors in spring 2011.

Greenhouse History

Since 1979 there have been three different greenhouses built in Enfield House. Previous greenhouses provided a space to study aquaponic agriculture involving hydroponic basil and tilapia.

The space was an inspiration for independent study in the sciences and arts as well as an open community center. Since the renovation of the mod in 2008, students, staff, and faculty have worked to develop a plan to build a new greenhouse.

Between 2009 and 2011, the greenhouse community worked to fundraise for this construction project. The design process engaged many community members, with the goal to make this new structure a showcase for environmentally responsible living. The new greenhouse, which opened its doors in spring 2011, is adjacent to the Greenhouse Mod (Enfield House apartment 46), though no longer attached to the main structure. The space is open to the entire Hampshire community, and may be used for classes or student gatherings and events.

Design goals included handicapped accessibility, high-quality glazed glass panels, and appropriate ventilation. The floor plan is flexible enough to adapt to the changing interests of the community.

Whether it's a potluck dinner, open house, or greenhouse work day, there are always fun things happening at the Greenhouse Mod!

Greenhouse Mission Statement

The Enfield Solar Greenhouse is a place for growing plants and food, learning about environmental sustainability, and for events that bring the Hampshire community together.

The students who live in the Greenhouse Mod have always been responsible for the care and upkeep of the greenhouse.

Residents are selected through an application process that looks for students who are interested in communal, sustainable living, and are committed to the goals of the Enfield Solar Greenhouse.

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893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002