On Top of the Root Cellar

September 18, 2012

Root Cellar

on top of our root cellar

We’re giddy. Our root cellar is done! That’s right, we’ve moved many of our supplies from the nooks and crannies of our home into our root cellar. That lamp oil that was shoved behind the television? It’s in the root cellar. The tote of toothpaste tucked away under one of the kid’s bed. It’s in the root cellar. Even the buckets of beans and sugar that adorned our mower shed has a new home in the root cellar.

Not quite everything has made it below ground yet; there are still some items that will make the journey to a new home. But needless to say, we’re very happy with where we are.

During the transition, we even found food that we’d forgotten about. It’s a good feeling to learn that you have a little more food than you thought you did.

Above the Root Cellar

We have also completed work on the top side of the root cellar. If you recall, our root cellar was carved out of the earth in a relatively flat area of our homestead. We chose this rather than trying to go into the side of hill for a couple of reasons. First, the land closest to our house is pretty flat. We didn’t want to have to travel to the backside of our property just to get a jar of jelly.

Second, we wanted to leave the concrete roof of the root cellar above ground so that we could build on top of it.

In the picture above, you can see the we’ve put a metal building atop our root cellar. The door on the left side of the building opens directly into a stairwell. This leads down to the root cellar.

To the right of the stairwell is the 20′ x 12′ outbuilding. That building is actually divided into two areas.

the outbuilding

The door provides entrance into the outbuilding. It’s an inclosed area that we can use for storage. I’m also using it as an office. The porch-like area on the right is called an abattoir. Yeah, I didn’t know that word either. But according to Laura, it’s a place where you process animals.

I’m going to put a stainless steel counter out there, we have some running water close by, and the cross beams above the porch are designed to hold a very heavy weight (e.g. a deer or hog). It should work out well as an abattoir.

There are still a few little odds and ends to work out – we’re still experiencing too much moisture in the root cellar. But overall, we’re very, very pleased!

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5 Comments on “On Top of the Root Cellar”

  1. Beck Says:

    It is actually a lot bigger that the pictures show. I love the fact that it is a now usable space to store lots of food and things. Plus you now have a separate office space. I know you’ll are thrilled!


  2. lfcrossman Says:

    Just went through all the ‘root cellar’ posts. What a nice job you have done! Can we see pictures of the inside – below and above? AND, just a thought, maybe make a cover for the stairwell that will disguise it, look like just a floor, if you need to *hide out* down below. Maybe something you can easily slide into place when needed, but stored against the wall until then. Also, If possible, can we see a breakdown of the expense, also? I am (mentally) trying to build a small house structure with a solid bunker type basement below, and I have no idea what some costs are going to be. Love your blog!


    • Joe Says:

      Thanks lfcrossman. I’m going to put together a wrap up post that will combine some lessons learned, show some more detail, etc.

      It’s funny you should mention the false floor idea. I’ve been toying with that for a while now trying to figure a good way to implement just that. I don’t have a great idea yet, but I’m still noodling over it.



  3. grumpygrizzlyfarms Says:

    This cellar is amazing! We are hoping to build one very similar this spring. We are trying to plan a budget and get an approximate cost (without the building)…if you wouldn’t mind sharing any information that you have it would be fabulous. You can email me at Thank you! Michelle


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