A new set of high tunnel greenhouses will anchor a slipping hillside that ignores the city. 3 years of planning have actually led Grow Ohio Valley to officially lease the Vineyard Hills area for farming, and the organization’s founders are enthusiastic about the site’s future.
Grow OV rented the property from the Wheeling Housing Authority in 2014. The 30- by100-foot greenhouses were constructed within a cleared space of approximately 1 acre, and they will grow a range of fruits and vegetables to improve regional food production in a location with a restricted local food supply.
Creator Danny Swan estimated that the 2 centers will produce $18,600 worth of crops every year. They will increase Grow OV’s general food yield by more than 50 percent.
“That’s method greater than a garden the size of these high tunnels,” he said, referring to the amount of food these elite greenhouses can produce versus outdoor farming.
He stated the tunnels will not only provide space to grow food, however they will contain a regulated climate to extend the growing season. Grow OV will be able to use the winter season to produce crops, and in situations of heavy spring rains saturating the soil – when fungi might lock to and damage plants – the greenhouses will offer shelter.
Swan stated the tunnels will likely ensure a dependable crop output the company can count on.
Aside from food, Executive Director Ken Peralta stated the hillside might eventually double as a community resource, running as a place for outdoor activities and neighborhood events.
“Long term, this could be a park in the center of Wheeling with food, flowers and fauna,” Peralta stated.
The site was previously the Lincoln Homes public housing advancement, prior to it was destroyed in 1999 when the Wheeling Housing Authority got a $17.1 million Hope VI grant. Some replacement houses were built, but the brand-new Grow OV site did not have stability for new advancement because of a slipping hillside.
As an educational platform, Swan said greenhouses are a technology that illustrate the process of growing food in an intriguing manner. Grow OV has hosted a range of academic workshops, and Swan said the high tunnels will provide an engrossing setting to teach students about growing their own food.
“It’s something young people can sink their teeth into,” he stated.