Little River Flower Farm

Photovoltaic Greenhouse in Buxton, Maine 


This 6,400 square foot research and development greenhouse is outfitted with high performance renewable energy solutions. The facility achieves organic carbon negative food production 365 days of the year. Bruce and Nancy Stedman provide local food to surrounding grocery chains and markets.

Little River Flower Farm Winter

25-33% PV coverage

6,400 square feet

50% annual heat savings

14.4kW PV peak output


Solar Coverage & Optimal Growth

Flexible solar panels are laminated onto roof glazing. The PV array has a peak output of 14.4kW, powering all pumps and fans. The structure is divided into 4 test zones, measuring the effects of different amounts of opaque solar panel coverage. A two year study shows that 25-33% or more solar coverage maintains optimal plant growth year round.

50% Annual Heat Savings vs. Traditional Structure

The greenhouse has a root zone radiant heat system powered by a biomass boiler. This system allows for precise temperature control to individual raised beds with minimal excess heat loss. Phase change material is also built into some beds, naturally maintaining optimal root zone temperature.

Reducing Inputs while Increasing Outputs

The structural design and integrated renewables of this greenhouse minimize many operational costs while still supporting the cultivation of premium organic product. The greenhouse achieves economic and environmental sustainability, the ultimate goal of responsible growers everywhere.

Little River Flower Farm ArchSolar
Little River Flower Farm ArchSolar Kale
Little River Flower Farm ArchSolar Chard

Bruce and Nancy Stedman

Meet the Farmers

For nearly 20 years, Bruce and Nancy Stedman have worked their land year round. They grow certified organic vegetables which they supply to Whole Foods, CSA’s, and direct to Portland, Maine, area restaurants. Nancy leads their booming flower cutting and floral arrangement business, of which all flowers are grown onsite. Bruce maintains their land and spearheads Little River Flower Farm’s latest efforts in sustainability and innovative growing practices.