Check this out, Hemp construction! Hemp has been used in various forms of construction dating back to the Romans, in bridges, sails, ropes, and now more recently in residential construction. Reintroduced first in Europe, Hemp construction takes form as a low weight, high insulating, vapor permeable wall component. Placed usually in one of three ways: cast in place, sprayed, or by block. Hempcrete utilizes the core of hemp plants in a woodchip like form as the aggregate, combined with natural binders, and water to achieve the finished product. We were fortunate to visit a site in central Texas where they are using a hempcrete in the wall assembly, to surround a roughly 400 year old Japanese timber frame structure. Huge thanks to Mattie Mead, who founded Hempitecture, an Idaho based company bringing hempcrete and hemp wool insulation to the American market, for taking time to show us this project. Hemp has gotten a bad wrap over the last century thanks to its medicinal cousin. But from the sound of it, we should be seeing more and more applications of hemp here in the states, as it is a bomber agricultural commodity with so many applications.
Project – Central Texas
Mattie Mead – Hempitecture
Chad Burnel – EIM inc. – Builder
Axel Vervoodt – Architect
Mell Lawrence – Local Architect
Seth Willison – Timber Frame Designer
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