The Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership is a 501c3 nonprofit located in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. Our mission is to educate the community in sustainable agricultural practices by producing food year-round using local renewable energy.
Education Dome Demonstrates Sustainable Vegetable Production
Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership’s (GGP) Education Dome was the first greenhouse to be completed and begin operations in 2017 on GGP’s educational site in Pagosa Springs’ Centennial Park. Volunteer carpenters built the beds and Archuleta School District students installed the soil. Enthusiastic volunteer growers immediately planted vegetables and continue to provide the steady cadre of gardeners who tend to growing, harvesting, and maintenance.
The Education Dome hosts learners of all ages who tour and learn about how we grow year-round. Kids and grown-ups alike are fascinated by the growing dome’s passive solar Bayliss lifters in the ceiling and its low-tech climate battery ventilation. Whether learners are school-aged children or adults with gardening experience, GGP encourages folks to grow their skills and understanding. The Education Dome’s teaching methods change as community needs evolve.
The Education Dome’s temperature for growing plants is optimized with direct-use geothermal heat allowing for year-round production. The Town of Pagosa Springs’ geothermal fluid shares its heat with potable water through a heat exchanger. Hot potable water is circulated in closed-loop piping under the paths, thereby heating the greenhouse. The hot geothermal resource continues its course downhill without ever being exposed to the air. GGP’s solar installation supplies electricity to ventilation fans and lighting.
Growers in the Education Dome use OMRI-approved (organic) fertilization products and natural pest management methods. A drip irrigation system is monitored for maximum food production and minimum water use. Volunteer gardeners often control pests, water vegetables, and fertilize soil by hand. Daylight hours on dark winter days are extended using energy conservative LED full spectrum lighting.
GGP’s Education Dome hours of operations vary according to changing community needs.