Rammed earth Waipu, Northland

Rammed earth and light timber frame home with guest house on a ridge line overlooking Bream Bay in Northland. The house is being built in two stages. A 70 m² guest house first and then the main house to follow in a few years time.

Traditional rammed earth will not conform to the new NZ Earthbuilding Standards due to the external wall insulation requirements. So we are developing a solution for this project. We will either use a sandwich technique where two thin rammed earth walls are separated with an insulated perlite core or use a homogenous mix with pumice or scoria aggregate to reduce the density to comply with the new regulations.

A natural swimming pool will be situated north of the house. These pools use plants to naturally self regulate, keeping the water clean without the use of chlorine or other toxic chemicals. They look beautiful with the plant life in the water, just like a natural wetland. The adjacent regeneration zone provides an ecosystem for water loving insects and the pools require little maintenance other than skimming.

The land is to be planted in trees, a food forest and vegetable gardens based on permaculture principles.