Win a copy of The Biotime Log this week in the Permaculture forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies living kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • raven ranson
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Julia Winter
garden masters:
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • thomas rubino
  • Bill Crim
  • Kim Goodwin
  • Joylynn Hardesty
gardeners:
  • Amit Enventres
  • Mike Jay
  • Dan Boone

rammed Earth garden beds  RSS feed

 
Posts: 12
Location: Southern Arizona - Winter Zone 9a (USDA) - Summer Zone 10 (AHS Heat Zone) - Climate Zone 12 (Sunset)
greening the desert solar trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I'm considering making garden beds from rammed Earth. I'm basically a newbie - I've done some basic frame stucco construction, but with an organized group, not on my own before. I know that water proofing the walls can be an issue, especially if they're going to be constantly wet (the inside walls) from soil and moisture. Does anyone have experience with this? Thanks.
 
pollinator
Posts: 574
Location: Southern Arizona. Zone 8b
75
bee bike fish greening the desert solar woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Adobe is probably a better solution. 

If your soil isn't right for making adobe, you can make cement stabilized soil if you aren't 100% set on it being "natural" or possibly lime stabilized (more natural)

I've made cement stabilized blocks using my local soil (>95% sand and rock) with cement at a 9 to 1 ratio.  It dries hard and has lasted 12 years so far in the rain, etc. without any noticeable degradation.  I'm working on building a driveway using similar mix.

Another  possibility that I've seen frequently in the middle east, is to create blocks, etc. out of mud, dry the blocks thoroughly, build a wall out of them, then coat the wall with a cement/lime soil mix.  This uses even less cement and the wall is almost as durable.  However, the coating can be a little fragile and can break off if you bang it with something (wheelbarrow, tractor, etc.)
 
pollinator
Posts: 236
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
34
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Have you thought of doing earthbag instead? Use the same material to fill, tamp in place and cover with a nice lime plaster. They wouldn't matter if they got wet and I think are easier to build.
 
Kat Zeeberg
Posts: 12
Location: Southern Arizona - Winter Zone 9a (USDA) - Summer Zone 10 (AHS Heat Zone) - Climate Zone 12 (Sunset)
greening the desert solar trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Peter and Daniel - thanks for the info. I will look into those options. I just want to make something out of dirt because that is the natural building material I have on my land - but it doesn't have to be rammed earth specifically - so your ideas sound good too. I just thought rammed earth would be easier to build myself than adobe - but earth bags are a good alternative.
 
A lot of people cry when they cut onions. The trick is not to form an emotional bond. This tiny ad told me:
It's like binging on 7 seasons of your favorite netflix permaculture show
http://permaculture-design-course.com/
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!