Hello everyone, i'm new here so I thought I should first introduce myself before I begin posting. I just recently moved to Nevada to live / work on an Organic Orchard in the middle of the desert. I'm new to all of this, for the most part. I'm working under the guidance of my good friend who is the care taker of the land. We grow everything here, the main thing being Pomegranates, but also plums, figs, grapes, blue berries, pecans, and soon to have corn, beats, radishes, tomatoes, peas of different varieties, spinach, lettuce, straw berries, broccoli, cauliflower, squash, zucchini, onions of different varieties, peppers, miscellaneous edible ground cover, etc, etc. Also on the property is a chicken coop, with egg producing (but we're not eating them, eggs or chickens) chickens, aswell as about 12 bee boxes, give or take. To be honest i'm not quite sure what the deal is with the bees, but I don't hang out in their general area anyhow :wink: I'm here because i'm more into sustainable housing and construction. I'm wanting to build an earthbag structure here, then a home. Earthbags are essentially a hybrid of rammed earth construction, and adobe construction. Using raw earth as a construction medium, you can create a natural home with tons of thermal mass and excellent insulative values. The bags, typically your average "feed bag", is filled with earth, closed up, tamped and compacted, and laid in a row in a masonry style similar to laying bricks. The dirt in the bag cures and hardens, forming giant adobe like bricks. Basic materials for building an earthbag house include, obviously the BAGS. The bags can be misprinted feed bags which can be purchased in bulk, special continuous earthbag tubes which are create for building domes and circular structures. You will also need BARBED WIRE, which is applied twice between each row of earthbags. This gives the wall added tensile strength and prevents shifting of the bags as the wall gets higher. You will need DIRT aswell. If you buy it, you can use reject sand from Gravel yards. Typically, a TON (2,000lbs) of dirt will cost about $1.50+/. Yes, a dollar fifty for two thousand pounds of useable building material. Thats fucking cheap. Of course, you'll have to pay to have it shipped in but none-the-less, you're looking at a huge saving over conventional building materials. Or, and this is a more favorable idea, BURY your house some. Yeah, thats right. Dig a hole in the ground, use that dirt to fill your bags. And build your home in that hole. By burying your house, completely or partially, you gain a tremendous amount of insulation. If built right, we're talking about a home that without heating or cooling will remain comfortable year round. Top it off with a living roof, and you're set. An earthbag home is essentially fireproof, windproof, withstands earthquakes MUCH better than conventional housing structures, etc. Your earthern walls, and earthern floors surely won't catch fire. With a living roof, its unlikely any wood used in construction would easily catch fire. If a tree were to fall on your house, you wouldn't have a collapsed wall or thousands and thousands of dollars in repairs! An earthbag home's walls are typically about a foot and a half thick of pure solid mass. Its not going to blow away in a hurricane or tornado, either. There are a few books on the matter and some decent info on the web. Some houses online you'll find are made with more up-to-date methods in order to bring them "up to code" but built properly, your county surveyor won't even see it from the air when they're flying over. So, basically i'm here to learn more about the gardening aspect, and to discuss with anyone interested the merits of earthbag construction. The projects I have lined up for it is designing a small garden connected to this house using earthbags as planters, and as small walls to the garden. Also, possibly an earthbag greenhouse so we can grow year round here. And of course, my earthbag home :wink: So, with that said, anyone know alot about growing bananas? Well I suppose i'll make a new thread for that.