Michael Garnier has helped pioneer the craft of modern treehouse construction. His Garnier limb -invented in collaboration with other enthusiasts as an open source project- holds up to 8,000 pounds and allows treehouse builders to create stronger, more durable dwellings in the trees.
When Garnier, who owns a treehouse resort with 9 elevated dwellings, decided to build his own home for himself and his wife Peggy, it had to also be nestled in the branches.
While his B&B cabins in the air are closer to 100 square feet, for his own home he decided to go big. His home is 1800 square feet on three floors. He calls it the world’s largest treehouse (not a fact, though he challenges anyone to prove him wrong).
He selected a spot in the middle of a grove of White Oak trees and used 7 trees to support the weight of his home (the largest one in the middle of the home is no longer living, but he manufactured a root system for it so it would still support the weight of a living tree).
In this video, Garnier takes us for a tour of his “trees house” and explains how a home like his does less damage to the grove of trees than if he’d built a conventional house there.
Television producer-turned-blogger-turned-ecogeek, Kirsten Dirksen is co-founder of faircompanies.com a news/blog/video site focused on environmental sustainability for people and the planet.
Two years ago, Debra and her family lived in a nearly 2000 square foot home on an acre and a half of land. Then her husband lost his job and they began to work 4 jobs between them to pay the mortgage, until one day they remembered they had a choice.
Before having their son, Debra and her husband Gary had spent 9 years living in very tiny homes in South America. Living small hadn’t felt like a sacrifice, but a way to stay focused on what is important. They decided they wanted to get back to that.
Christian Schallert’s tiny apartment morphs from kitchen to bedroom to living room to dining room all within a matter of minutes.
When he isn’t cooking, dressing, sleeping or eating, his 258-square-foot apartment looks like an empty cube. To create a room, he has to build it:
Kitchen: he clicks a spot on his vast wall of click-able furniture, and a spring-loaded door swings up to reveal an instant kitchen: double-burner, dishwasher, sink, countertop and microwave oven. The full-sized refrigerator and freezer click open just alongside.
Bedroom: he rolls his bed out from under the balcony, his stairs become become bedside tables and he can even swing his tv out from the wall.
Dining Room: he lowers a plank from the wall, his flower-stand becomes a support and his stairs become a bench.
Located in Barcelona’s hip Born district, the tiny apartment is a remodeled pigeon loft. Christian says its design was inspired by the space-saving furniture aboard boats, as well as the clean lines of a small Japanese home.
One of Christian’s friends has dubbed his apartment “G.I. Joe’s flat”. There is definitely more work involved in constructing and deconstructing your dining room/kitchen/bedroom every day or meal, but Christian likes it that way. He says it’s what helps keep him in shape.
You don’t need to buy a new efficient heater this winter to save money. It’s more important to make sure the heat that is being produced goes into your home and then stays there. Here are 3 things you can do to help in that process and save up to 40% on the energy used to heat and cool your home.
While most people could probably complete the following three tasks on their own, an experienced and knowledgeable home performance contractor will not only do them for you, but should also verify that all tasks were completed correctly using an infrared camera, blower door, duct blaster, and other tools of the trade. Make sure your home performance contractor “tests in and tests out” – tests your home when he or she arrives to determine their scope of work and tests your home when they are about to leave in order to verify their work.