Articles

Some of the oldest buildings and structures on the planet are made out of earth. Parts of the Great Wall of China were made out of adobe brick, as were some of the pyramids in Egypt. Devon county in England is known for having entire towns, hundreds of years old, built...

We get many questions about how earthen construction works in conjunction with the building code. Here are some of our insights:

 

1. Building regulation is necessary.

Buildings influence more than just your own life. They should be built to high standards of health and s...

Often, when discussing the pros and cons of building with cob, or earthen materials in general, it is brought up that it is such a labor intensive way of building. Because this comes up so often I believe it is interesting to look at this statement carefully and see wh...

This Land Was His Land
(Originally published in the New York Times, July 9 2012)

By DOUGLAS BRINKLEY and JOHNNY DEPP

 

The legend of Woody Guthrie as folk singer is firmly etched in America’s collective consciousness. Compositions like “Deportee,” “Pastures of P...

During a week in October, a group of about 80 natural builders came together for the annual “Natural Building Colloquium” in Southern Oregon. These events began about 15 years ago, as a way to bring members of the fledgling natural building movement together to share s...

A few weeks ago we went to visit friends who run a children’s camp on the shores of Lake Tahoe, CA, to relax and spend some time on the lake. In order to get there we had to drive through Reno, Nevada.  Approaching Reno from the north, a significant building caught my...

Recently I had the good fortune to visit a small island off the coast of El Salvador.  The island, called “Isle de Meangueara”, can only be reached by taking a small lancha (boat) from the port town of La Union on the mainland.  Everything the island uses arrives like...

OK, it’s a funny rhyme, but it is a serious occasion. Building a house with the one you love can be a dangerous undertaking for your relationship. Many married couples end up divorced after several years of working on a house together. Often the house then has to be so...

It is important to consider the characteristics of the materials you bring into your house. By understanding how they effect you, you can then choose use materials that will make your living condition more pleasant, harmonious, functional, and healthy. These very impor...

In the early Eighties I read a very interesting little book by a philosopher named Ivan Illich. The book was about driving cars and started out by calculating the average speed at which a car travels in its lifetime. Want to guess? The answer is 6 miles per hour. This...

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