Choosing Straw Bales for Home Construction

Straw bale home construction

Bale type, which size is best, how to handle moisture content, and what is the overall ideal bale for home construction – all common questions we hear at every workshop. BECAUSE getting the right bales is really important! This choice affects the amount of labor needed for installation, integrity of the wall system, plaster details, […]

Gravel in your toe ups. Is that enough?

straw bale wall toe ups

It’s the million dollar question you’ve all been wondering about: is it enough to have just gravel in your toe ups or do you need something more? Okay, it may not be a question worth a million dollars, but making a bad decision here can indeed cost you money. In some cases just a little […]

The Power of Education – A 15 Question Test

straw bale workshop site

It may sound obvious, but learning how to build a house, of any kind but especially a straw bale house, is a good thing to do before you actually start building. Ask yourself the following 15 questions and if you cannot answer them with a high level of confidence, you would be best served to gain some more experience before you start building.

The Cost of Straw Bale Construction

Energy Efficiency

When people talk about the cost of straw bale construction, they often get things a bit muddled up. They either come in way too low or way too high. I’m here to set the record straight, hopefully once and for all.

A Great Use for Leftover NHL

straw bale house window seat

Here’s a great use for any left over bags of natural hydraulic lime you may have from your straw bale plastering job.

Repairing Straw Bale Water Damaged Walls

Water damage in straw bale walls is something that does not happen very often, especially in well built homes; however, even with the best construction practices, it can happen. When it does, it’s important to know how to recognize it and how to fix it.

Debunking the Rodent Myth

rodent myth

I know, I know…For most of you this is old information, BUT if there are any folks out there that still have a worry in their minds (and it’s OK if you do!) about straw bale houses and rodent invasions, this latest “Straw Bale Minute” is a must watch. Trust me, rodents would much prefer […]

Conversations on a Plane

United Airlines taking off

Gabriella and I have noticed a recent surge in new subscribers to and many who have signed up have contacted us to let us know they are brand new to the world of straw bale construction. We want to welcome all of you here and we figured it would be helpful to give you an introduction to what it’s like to build a straw bale home.

Ten Tough Questions Answered

question mark

I recently asked a bunch of you to send me your toughest straw bale question. I had about 200 people answer the call and I thank you for writing in. Below are the answers to the top ten of those questions. Some of these questions are compilations from many questions as some of you asked […]

Straw Bale Radio Interview on Jefferson Exchange –

Andrew Morrison podcast

I was recently invited to do a straw bale radio interview on Jefferson Exchange, a popular morning talk show here in Oregon and California to discuss straw bale construction. The program is an hour long and covers many aspects of building with bales. The first fifteen minutes or so is primarily a conversation between me […]

Staying Dry & Healthy: Mold Spores in Straw Bale Homes

mold spores

I recently heard that some, if not all, straw and hay out of the Pacific Northwest has a mold spore in it. The question that accompanied this information is how to counter mold spores in straw bale homes and use dry bales in construction. The answer is quite simple: keep the bales dry. Mold can […]

How Tall Can a Straw Bale Building Be?

tall straw bale structure

How tall can a straw bale building be? This is a common question. People want to know if they can build three story homes with straw bales or if they are limited to one story. That all depends on the way you chose to build: load bearing or in-fill. There are differing opinions on how […]

Can a Straw Bale House Survive Without a Heat Source?

Drawing of an upside down fire stack

Greetings. I have a farm in Trinidad, Colorado (although I live in Denver) and on it is an old house that I want to tear down. I would like to build a house that is so energy efficient that I can leave it with no heat in the winter and have no problems with freezing, […]

The Building Green Podcast April 2007

Andrew Morrison podcast

Welcome to the Building Green Podcast April 2007. This is my monthly Q&A session where I answer your green building and straw bale construction questions. This month I answer the following questions: 1. Any thoughts on how to go about looking for land that is suitable for straw bale building? 2. Metal roof or composition? […]

March 2007 Building Green Podcast Q&A –

Andrew Morrison podcast

Welcome to the March 2007 Building Green podcast. This is my monthly Q&A session where I answer your green building and straw bale construction questions. Sorry it has been so long since I uploaded a Q & A podcast. I have been super busy putting together a brand new Load Bearing production and writing a […]

Straw Bale in a 4th Grade Class

Child Planting a Tree

I received an email today from a curriculum writer for a fourth grade class in Kansas. The idea is to write a curriculum that introduces the class to straw bale construction as an economic and environmental asset. I have attached the email below because I think it is so cool that fourth graders will be […]