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A living laboratory for a sustainable human future.

Natural Building at Earthaven

Earthaven’s passive-solar community buildings and individual homes are built of mostly natural materials, usually with lumber milled from trees on the land, and usually with green or red metal roofs for roof-water catchment. We have about 30 natural buildings at Earthaven now. We teach many of the building techniques, mentioned below, at Earthaven. See our Calendar.

Leela House was constructed by the Natural Building School. Rounded rooms and curves are one of the joys of natural building with earth and straw. The cob dining alcove has a built-in cob bench on the inside, and a conical red roof outside. The north wall of the house is straw bale.

Council Hall

Our Council Hall is a 13-sided timber-framed structure with straw bale, straw-clay, and cob walls; earth-plastered interior and exterior wall surfaces; and a hardwood floor with poplar and walnut planks from the land and radiant heating.

Bellavia Office

Monique and JuanPablo Office is a small timber-framed structure with clay-straw walls, earth-plastered interior and exterior surfaces, an earthen and slate floor, and a living roof.

Timber Frames

The three-story, 4,300 sq. ft. Village Terraces (above) and the two-story White Owl are both timber-framed structures with earth-plastered exterior walls and blown-in cellulose insulation.

Natural Building School

The Natural Building School has used earth, sand, stone, straw and wood to build ecologically-sound, aesthetically pleasing cob, clay straw, wattle and daub and straw bale structures. Upcoming projects include apprenticeships for the completion of the Village Arts Studio​. We look forward to sharing the liberating power of natural building with you!

Micro Hut and Tribal Condo

Both the Tribal Condo and the Micro Hut are timber-framed structures with lumber from the land and earth-plastered interior and exterior surfaces. Both have walls that combine thermal mass and insulation: the Tribal Condo has clay-straw walls, and the Micro Hut has chip-slip walls (wood chips and clay slurry tamped into wall forms).

Medicine Wheel House

The “Pallet Palace,” a 3½ story multi-family home offering inexpensive cooperative living, is a stud-framed building made of used plywood from recycled cranberry juice pallets, recycled bridge spans, recycled hardwood floors, blown-in cellulose insulation, and poplar clapboard from trees milled on the land.

Stones’ Earthship

The Stones’ Earthship is a two-bedroom home that is bermed into the south side of a hill, and has walls of recycled tires filled with rammed earth. One of two roofwater catchment tanks is shown here.

Julie and Andy’s House

Julie and Andy’s House, a two-story, 3-bedroom home for a family of four, has let-in diagonal bracing (not plywood) for shear strength in exterior walls, blown-in cellulose insulation, recycled plywood subflooring, and an earth-plastered exterior.