NW bale wall finishing. We discussed endless possibilities for finishing the end of the bale walls. Due to the nature of the building and the fragile nature of straw, when it comes to moisture and rot, there were not a huge number of feasable options. The straw had to be covered and kept dry whilst the earth needed to fall and look fairly natural down the side of the building. Here, the waterproof layers continue to encapsulate the straw behind the willow horizontals and are secured with the large vertical trunk. The tyres hold the willow in place at the other end without damaging the layers behind.
SE side, needed a different solution of finishing and retaining, so we used oak planks to hold the soil back and finish the straw wall. The shower tray is still visible as the final wall isn't in place yet.
Interior straw walls clipped neatly ready for rendering. The cloth protects the plumbing for the kitchen sink. For the moment the tyres will remain visible. They protect the bales from the damp floor/ground and are filled with large stones.
Adam working the first layer of lime mortar well into the bales. The further into the bales this layer goes the better supported the final wall will be. Not particularly strenuous work but hard on the fingers with constant forcing of mix into the straw. 3 parts sharp sand, 1 part lime and enough water to form a slurry.
Cordwood wall sections under construction. They rest on horizontal beams of cleaved chestnut wrapped in polythene to keep them off the ground. The two sides of the wall are mortared and the central area is filled with wood chippings, this reduces the amount of mortar used and in enclosed buildings provided an added layer of insulation.
Second layer of lime mortar in position, scratched to take the final finish coat once dry.
Evening sunshine on a portion of finished cordwood wall. It's starting to look good.