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Greenhouse vegetable farming, setup cost in 1/2 acre, requirements, and profit per 1/2 acre

Greenhouse farming is a very important way to produce those crops we can't grow in the offseason. Even in the least agricultural friendly conditions, we can grow most of the plant-based vegetables, flowers, fruits, and microgreens in the greenhouse. 

Greenhouses provide an important barrier between agricultural areas and sunlight. We can control the sunlight effect on various plants inside the greenhouse.

Let's understand how can we grow vegetables inside the greenhouse. 

Greenhouse vegetable farming in 1/2 acre

We can grow any plant or vine-based vegetables inside greenhouse. One major advantage of greenhouse farming is that we can practice it even on non-agricultural land. 

Greenhouse vegetable farming

Before starting, we need some requirements to make a greenhouse and process further. We are going to understand the requirements for a poly sheet greenhouse that is easy to make, maintain, and cheaper than a glass greenhouse.

Greenhouse vegetable farming setup cost in 1/2 acre

In a 1/2 acre area, we need to invest less than a glass greenhouse. Polysheet greenhouse is cheaper, easy to manage, and works far better than ordinary atmosphere agriculture. 

Following is an estimation of the cost of requirements to make a greenhouse on 1/2 acre of land-

One time investment

  • Greenhouse metal structure cost- 1,60,000 INR
  • Greenhouse polysheet cost- 3,50,000 INR
  • Water showering system cost- 50,000 INR 
  • Air blower cost- 20,000 INR
  • Containers cost- 8,000 INR
  • Showering buckets cost- 1,000 INR(4 pieces)
  • Labor cost- 15,000 INR

Total cost- 6,04,000 INR

Per cycle cost(2 months)

  • Seed cost- 1,000 INR
  • Water cost- 8,000 INR
  • Electricity cost- 5,000 INR
  • Labor cost- 50,000 INR
  • Fertilized soil mixture cost- 40,000 INR
  • Maintenance cost- 10,000 INR

Total cost- 1,14,000 INR

Greenhouse requirements in 1/2 acre

There are two shapes we can decide to make greenhouse; Cuboid and horizontal semi-cylindrical. Here we choose the semi-cylindrical shape of the greenhouse and the following are the requirements to make it on 1/2 acre of land.

  • Metal structure

The outer structure of the greenhouse is made of metal pipes. The steel pipes are the most reliable for the greenhouse. 

In the market, there are ready-made metal structures for greenhouses. According to your comfort, either you can buy readymade or you can order to make according to your demand. In 1/2 acre land, you can make either a 25x80 square meter greenhouse or 40x50 square meter greenhouse. Also, you can make two greenhouses of  20x25 square meters each.

to make a greenhouse in 1/2 acre of land, you need almost 2000 meters of metal pipe. In the market, they are available in pieces of 10 meters. You need 1000 meter curved arch metal pipes to make the arch of the greenhouse 50 meters in length.  

So you need to buy 1000 meters of straight metal pipes to fix in a curved arch all around. These pipes fix with each other with the help of screws. 

  • Polysheet cover

To cover the metal structure from the outside and be rain waterproof, we need a poly sheet of 2mm at least. 

To cover a half-acre greenhouse, we need almost 4,400 square meters of a polysheet. We can cover a curved surface of 3,200 square meters of the greenhouse from it. The rest of the sheet is a 1,200 square feet sheet we use on the front and back walls of the greenhouse. 

  • Wooden slabs

To create more space inside the greenhouse,  we can use the principle of vertical farming. 

So to create more space for vegetables, we use vertical wooden slabs for containers in ladder form.

  • Soil preparation

Maybe you are going to have a greenhouse on dead land. For that, you need fertile soil with organic fertilizers. We suggest you avoid chemical fertilizers just for faster growth. It increases the growth of plants only once. Chemical fertilizers don't help in soil regeneration. 

So, you need to prepare soil mixture for particular vegetables. For this, you can learn how to prepare soil mixture with the proper ratio of compost, garden soil, and river sand. 

  • Containers and support

The plastic containers are good enough for vegetable farming. They are light, easy to port, cheaper, and easily available in the market. 

For root vegetables, you need deeper containers, for wide plants, you need wide containers(but less deep), and for vines, you can have small pots too. 

For vines, you need extra metal support for the later growth and handle the weight of vegetables like a gourd, cucumber, pumpkin, bitter gourd, etc.

These metal supports can be rectangular or net-like shapes. It provides the extra space to expand. 

  • Automatic water showering system

In summers, a poly sheet increases the temperature inside the greenhouse. So you need a water showering system to maintain the temperature and moisture inside the greenhouse. 

These showering pipes start from all corners and cover the entire greenhouse. At the time of showering, they spray thin water showering all around the house. 

  • Air blower

In winter, the temperature can decrease more than the requirement for vegetables. So we need an air blower inside the greenhouse to maintain the inside temperature at night. 

You can keep them in all four corners and operate them directly from there to cover the entire greenhouse. 

  • Water showering buckets

For irrigation of plants,  you can choose a manual method of spraying water directly in the pots. 

There are many kinds of showering buckets available in the market. 

Profit in greenhouse vegetable farming in 1/2 acre

Here, we took an estimation of high-value vegetables in greenhouse farming. We took various varieties of vegetables and calculated a maximum profit from 1/2 acre land greenhouse. 

Total varieties of vegetables produced- 4

  • Gourd yield- 180 kg
  • Cabbage yield- 300 kg
  • Beans yield- 1 ton
  • Potatoes yield- 1.5 tons
  • Gourd yield price- 36,000 INR
  • Cabbage yield price- 75,000 INR
  • Beans yield price- 3,00,000 INR
  • Potatoes yield price- 1,50,000 INR

Total vegetable price from the greenhouse(1/2 acre)- 5,61,000 INR

Total profit margin- 4,47,000 INR/cycle

This is yield for two months. In a year, we can harvest 3 yields easily(2 months cycle). 

Total profit margin- 13,00,000 INR to 14,00,000 INR/Year

Is greenhouse vegetable farming profitable?

Like any other long-term business, greenhouse vegetable farming is profitable in longer terms. But the purpose to make a greenhouse is not to make 5 to 6 times the income from it. The primary need for the greenhouse is to produce vegetables that can't grow in the same land or region. It is very helpful in dead land agricultural areas. 

Still, it will not be wrong if we say that greenhouse vegetable farming is highly profitable in long term. If you get a subsidy on greenhouse then it will reduce your total investment cost. So you can recover your investment fast in upcoming years. After recovering all the investment, you can earn four to five times your regular investment in the greenhouse. 

We can say that on a larger scale, greenhouse farming is not for poor farmers. Even the 40% subsidy is not enough for the greenhouse to practice greenhouse vegetable farming for poor farmers. 

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