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Author Archives: iamronen

Provision Transylvania: Lars and Robin

Lars and Robin are a beautiful couple I’ve had the pleasure of meeting a few times who live in Alunisu (on the other side of Cluj). In this interview Lars does what he does so well … gently and compassionately painting a comprehensive picture of where we are and where we can choose to go […]

Chestnut Laundry Soap

We use shells of soap-nuts, which I believe come from Africa, to make home-made soap used for dishes, laundry and general cleaning. We have been wondering about an alternative that can be grown locally. Turns out there is a variety of chestnuts called Horse chestnut which does the trick.

What does it mean to be a peasant in Romania?

Earthbag Cellar Level 8 and 9 and Backfilling

We’ve completed levels 8 and 9 … … on level 9 we were joined by Itsik and Yifat who visited with us for a week … so we reached and celebrated the end of 9 together.   In level 9 we also put in additional vertical reinforcement by pounding in rebars into the longest stretch […]

Earthbag Technical Report from Nepal

Good Earth Nepal has published this PDF on its site. Before presenting some highlights I would add that there are a few details which, to my understanding are only correct in the context of typical above ground houses, less so with bermed or underground structures. “At present, there are over 15,000 Earthbag buildings worldwide with […]

Earthbag Cellar: Level 6 and 7 Done

After finishing level 6 we ordered another batch of sand (another 6 cubic meters, like the first batch). … and it was delivered just as we were getting started on Level 7 (because of tricky vehicle access to our property it came in two batches of 3 cubic meters) … this is the second batch […]

Earthbag Cellar: Level 5 Done ready for 6

Level 5 was already finished yesterday … but today required a bit more preparations before starting level 6. The central preparation was putting in the plastic moisture barrier around the entire external perimeter of the wall. We spread it out, folded the corner down and covered it with soil to hold it in place … […]

Earthbag Cellar: Level 5 Started

We decided to incorporate a small cob bench facing a western view (sunsets) – these are the supports built into the wall: Level 4 is complete and Level 5 has started

Earthbag Cellar: Working on Layer 4

With the second layer finished we needed to position the inner ends of the ventillation tubes … we had to assemble the corner joints and the parts that oenetrate the wall used cob to continue the slight angle that was already established with the long section of the pipe. The days are getting noticeable shorter, […]

Earthbag Cellar: Ready for 2nd Layer

When we finished laying the first layer of earthbags for the cellar walls we felt like “that’s done … on to the 2nd layer” … turns out that wasn’t the case … instead more preparations. First we had to do finish the first layer by putting in the retaining walls. That required leveling the soil […]


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