Maria Muscarella and Toby Crawley have built a cordwood home on 25 acres in the mountains near Asheville, North Carolina. She writes the blog Dirt Under My Nails about the cordwood building experience and her life homeschooling their children, Kaia and Leif.
After Toby attended a Rob Roy cordwood workshop at Earthwood Building School in West Chazy, NY, he came home and started cutting tulip poplar for their home. They had $60,000 with which to build, but he had to return to work as a software engineer when the budget was exceeded. It still only took them 15 months to build the house.
Their cordwood home has:
- double wall cordwood
- Icynene insulation
- a living roof of mostly sedum and a lavender plant
- a Hearthstone soapstone stove for heat
- all kinds of interesting motifs mortared into the walls, including glass bottles
- serious geometric cuttings for the framing
- post and beam with the beams left exposed
- a triangle window
- a gorgeous rock wall
- natural paving stones filled in with periwinkle
- a fancy chicken coop in the yard with about 30 chickens
- fig trees, chocolate mint and strawberry plants, and roses from which Maria makes rose petal jam
Watch the attached slideshow of pictures and visit Maria's blog for more. Read the NY Times article about the homestead and cordwood building that is on the rise.
To learn more about building with cordwood, read cordwood expert Richard Flateau's book, Cordwood Construction Best Practices or some of the cordwood articles below. In October 2010, Richard and Becky Flateau from Merrill, WI did a 2 day hands-on cordwood workshop
near Hendersonville, NC at the cost of $200 or $360 for a couple. The workshop project was an 18” cordwood infilling of post and beam framed greenhouse. The couple offers cordwood workshops to be held at your building site.