Saskatoon man grows tropical fruit in homemade greenhouse

Saskatoon man grows tropical fruit in homemade greenhouse
Dean Sopher, owner of local food production business Arkopia, grows tropical fruit in his Saskatoon greenhouse. (Submitted/Dean Sopher)

A local business owner has found a way to bring the tropics to Saskatoon in an a-peeling way.

Dean Sopher, the owner of local food production business Arkopia, has learned how to grow a variety of exotic fruits and plants – including bananas, guavas, passion fruits, oranges, eucalyptus and even bamboo – right in his own backyard.

Sopher said three years ago he decided to build a passive solar deep-winter greenhouse, entirely on his own.

The greenhouse was made with refurbished material and is kept warm and humid all the time, with temperatures kept at a minimum of 10 C.

“I knew the concept would work – I designed it with sun angles in mind,” Sopher said.

“In Saskatoon we have 319 sunny days a year, so (we) might as well take advantage of all of that.”

Sopher said growing the exotic fruit rounds out what he already grows on his farm for his family, and he also provides some of the produce to the local community.

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