Structure, Form, & Growth
A methodology new to buildings yet ancient to
gardening is introduced in this design - pleaching.
Pleaching is a method of weaving together tree
branches to form living archways, lattices, or
screens. The trunks of inosculate, or self-grafting,
trees, such as Elm, Live Oak, and Dogwood, are
the load-bearing structure, and the branches form a
continuous lattice frame for the walls and roof.
Weaved along the exterior is a dense protective
layer of vines, interspersed with soil pockets and
growing plants. Prefab scaffolds cut from 3D
computer files control the plant growth in the early
stages. On the interior, a clay and straw composite
insulates and blocks moisture, and a final layer of
smooth clay is applied like a plaster to dually
provide comfort and aesthetics. Existing homes
built with cob (clay & straw composite) demonstrate
the feasibility, longevity, and livability of the material
as a construction material. In essence, the tree
trunks of this design provide the structure for an
extruded ecosystem, whose growth is embraced
over time. Living examples of pleached structures
include the Red Alder bench by Richard Reames,
"Sycamore Tower" by Axel Erlandson.
Living Lattice system.
Prefab CNC scaffolding controls plant growth.
|Rhizomatic Computer Control
Grafting, Pleaching and Weaving
|FAB TREE HAB
Local Biota Living Graft Structure