I am studying straw bale home construction, and I like it! The homes are very beautiful, and are truly “green.” Vast quantities of wheat, rice, oats, barley, etc., are grown each year. The stalks of these grains are considered to be waste, and are used as animal bedding or they are burned which pollutes the air. This agricultural waste can be used to build straw bale homes. A wooden post and beam structure, or a steel framework, can be used to support the building, and the walls are filled in with bales of straw. The are covered with welded wire mesh and coated with several coats of lime or earthen plaster. The resulting 18 inch thick walls are super insulated which saves energy costs. After the “skin” of plaster is applied, these homes are extremely sturdy and resistant to fire, wind, earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes.
Because the wooden support structure looks more like traditional construction, in many places people are able to get building permits for these sustainable homes.
Large or small, straw bale homes are beautiful and economical to build.