DIY Root Cellars for Storing Carrots, Beets, Potatoes, and More

| 10/5/2016 10:02:00 AM

Tags: food storage, root cellars, winter, Celeste Longacre, New Hampshire,

Our ancestors didn't have supermarkets. They had to grow and store all of their own food. In order to do so, root cellars were a necessity. While no longer an absolute necessity, root cellars are still pretty cool. And, they are not particularly difficult to build.

My husband built our root cellar when we put an addition on our house. He dug down to the ledge, built up the sides with concrete blocks and poured a cement floor. He then continued on with the addition, putting a trap door in the floor.

late fall 015

Root Cellaring Basics

Not planning to build an addition soon? No problem. If you have a basement, you are already almost there. If your basement stays cool, but doesn't freeze, all you have to do is make a critter-free space. If your basement is heated, there needs to be a little more planning.

Pick a corner far away from the heat source that has earth on the outside of the walls. Build a room using these two walls and adding two more. Put some insulation on the inside of the new walls. Insert a door and create some shelves. And you are in business!

Beets, carrots, turnips and potatoes are ideal candidates for a root cellar. Potatoes need to be dry so set them in the Sun or on a porch for about twenty minutes.

mother earth news fair 2018 schedule


Next: August 4-5, 2018
Albany, OR

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!