Permaculture in Action

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Earth Bag Wall Completed

Here is the final instalment of the workshop we participated in 2 weekends ago. You can see the first of the photos in my last post.
People came back on the Sunday bursting with ideas (personally I'd had nightmares about being buried alive !!).Some had dreamed of rainbow serpents and others about herb spirals. So the result was to include both ideas into the project which added extra pressure to get the wall finished in time, but you can't squash creativity. So at one end of the wall was sculptured a head and the other end became a herb spiral tail.
 We still needed to complete the overall height so we had 3 groups working. One group on the head, one on the tail and the third on building higher...

The bags go on around the arch and a rock found in the garden is positioned as the key stone.

On go the bags over the arch. They have a small amount of cement added to ensure stability. The once again tamped down.

 The form is removed to produce the arch

The snake head taking shape

Remember the buckets from the last post. They were removed to produce peep holes.

Chicken wire was used to cover most of the wall. This is not always necessary but because the wall was still wet and the council wanted it we used it.

 Then we rendered using fatty sand, lime and cement.

 One section complete

 All hands on deck
peep hole. Has the shape of an eye don't you think!!

 Render going on the arch. We chose not to use wire here due to arch detail.

Notice the difference in the texture here with rest of wall where wire was used. here you are able to see outline of bags.

 Some finishing touches.

On Sunday evening we went to Sydney to listen to Mike Reynolds talk about Earthships..... more building with Earth. I can feel some earthbuilding projects at Purple Pear coming up in the not too distant future. Make so much sense.


  1. Where is it Kate? I want to go and see it. It just looks beautiful!! How lovely to be involved in a project like that!

  2. Mark here Kim - Kate is on granma duties. The wall is in the Sandhills community gardens which is in Newcastle behind the railway sheds which are in the park near Nobbies beach.


  3. Are you two sure you don't want to come to Tassie for a little....ummm.....'holiday'???
    What an awesome project to be part of - great work!!

  4. awesome, so beautiful and simple. Would be great fun to do this with kids.

  5. Oh, this is just too cool! Imagine the possibilities re. garden design! LOVE it!! I'm pinning if you don't mind.. ;)

  6. very cool. it's fun to see the progression in the photos.