I have become very inspired by Mike Oehlers $50 and up book and I really do like the PSP method.
It seems like a straightforward project, so I am considering building a small PSP house on our land, where we can live during the warmer months of the year.
I want to keep it really simple so I am thinking of just having a hardened dirt floor.
However we do live in Denmark and in general this country has high humidity and lots of rainfall all year around. So obviously it's really important to have good drainage and moisture issues needs special attention.
There is a real risk of health damaging black mold from building errors, which of course I want to avoid.
So how about sticking the poles straight in to the ground? Even if they are inside the building and the drain is working properly, I am a bit concerned about rot and moisture.
It just seems like it's a bit risky in this climate but then I don't really see any great alternatives other than sticking them in to concrete, but even then the concrete may take in the moisture from the ground and transfer it to the pole. I should add that we have a high content of clay in the ground, so if any water does get to the part of the pole that's sticking in to the ground, it will have difficulty draining away. Plus we live in a forest that gives us lots of shade for the better part of the day.
So I don't really know.
Maybe someone here has some input about what to do and how to approach this?
Would it be possible to use a French Drain system to connect all the posts at their base, then bring the french drain to daylight (downhill until it hits daylight) so that any and all water that gets around the posts drains off? Packing screen,washed gravel (just rocks) around the posts really makes them firm in the ground too.
Here in Maine, we scoff at the "experts" who say place posts in concrete because it is about the worst thing a person can do. That allows the frost to "grip" the rough concrete in the hole and it will lift a post right out of the ground.
I just ran across this thread and thought I'd tell you about my experience/ observation.
My garden was originally a mill pond but around 10 years ago it was filled in with in very heavy clay soil and thus the drainage is terrible and the ground soggy much of the year. I'm in the process of building a small house with attached greenhouse in my garden and was very worried about drainage. Therefore I dug a 70 cm deep french drain (with 100mm perf drain pipe and gravel) all the around. The french drain can drain away from my garden to lower ground. The area under the house is dug out to a depth of 40 cm for insulation and I was concerned it would fill with water but it is actually staying very dry there. Now I'm even considering skipping the capillary breaking gravel layer. I had expected the french drain would also drain the water a certain distance outside the drain but not so. Even 0.5 m outside of the french drain is still just as soggy as before.
I'm using a point foundation with precast cement carport stolpers (posts?) sitting on top of 40x40 cement fliser (pavers). Not very green but I was concerned with wooden posts rotting. Now that I see how well the french drain is working, I think a rubble trench foundation with embedded wood posts might have been OK and would certainly have been less expensive.
On a side note, when I moved to Denmark 8 years ago, the $50 and up book was one of the dozen books I brought with me. Even though I'm not building so cheaply and simply on my current project, it has been like a roll model for me and helps me remember to think about how I can build with less. And when I have B&B guests that are interested in natural building, debt free living, green transition, and similar, Mike Oehlers $50 and Up book is one that I often show them.