Earthbag dome in Australia

An Australia a team of happy young builders raised an earthbag dome from the soil of Milkwood Organic Farm in the hills near Mudgee, Australia. A structurally strong house was created from a bunch of bags, earth, stones, clay and lime. They held a EarthBag Building Workshop to show hands on how a low-impact natural building technique, utilising resources from nature, could be made with minimal costs.

Axel 'tamping' down the newly laid course of bags at Milkwood.
See more photos of earthbag workshop.

Earthbag construction is suited to sites where an ideal soil mix is not present for rammed earth building.  Basically it consists of filling of bags with soil, which is then compressed with hand tools. The moisture content of the soil is important. Barbed wire is included between each row to hold the bags in place and provide extra wall strength.

Milkwood is a small organic farm being created from scratch by
Kirsten and Nick.  In April they are holding a comprehensive Natural Building course with Sam Vivas of Viva Eco Homes. The course, designed for the home builder, covers light earth, cobb, load-bearing straw bale, mud rendering techniques and reciprocal roofs. They are rather passionate about natural building, and the empowerment that comes from having the skills to build non-toxic, living homes from natural materials.

Permaculture Research Institute of Australia
Photoset of our 2010 EarthBag Workshop at Milkwood Farm
How to make an earthbag dome – pdf by the Permaforest Trust

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