In December, 2007, Alex and Debra White Plume’s house burned down. Alex is the most-celebrated hemp farmer in the world.
Alex and Debra have built a temporary house, using material from the White Plume Community Center that was only built a few years ago. The Community Center is a model wind-and-solar energy installation.
The wind turbine and solar panels were installed by Matt Rankin’s High Plains Wind & Solar.
Hemphasis and the White Plume clan collaborated with American Limetec of Chicago to rebuild the Community Center with a model hempcrete installation.
Two pictures of the White Plume clan / Kiza Park Community Center, as it looked in 2007. In both, the wind turbine (located about 50feet beyond the building) and solar panels are visible.
Lakota Hempcrete Project May 14 2008 The Hemphasis crew begins stripping the siding from the Community Center. The building is about 26 feet by 41 feet, with an 8-foot rafter height.
The crew prepares the building for its Hemcrete® insulative walls. We cut a window where one was needed. The Hemcrete® materials. “Hemp shiv” (or shive) is the hurds of hemp stalks, what’s left after the fiber has been stripped from the stalk. It looks like wood chips. “Hemp Binder” is a high-lime cement mix. The shiv, binder, and water are combined to produce the wall, which we will (below) place in forms and allow to set up. Learn more about these products at American Limetec.
Mike and Andrew on the roof. After the siding was removed, we removed the chip-board underlay, leaving only the upright 3×8 frame studs. Alex White Plume’s bison graze in a prairie dog town a hundred yards from our work.
Jeremy, Jeremy and Lief ponder.
After removing the chipboard underlay, we place mesh over the studs on the ouside. The mesh will become the outer surface of the hempcrete walls, providing an anchoring surface for the stucco/plaster that will be applied after the hempcrete cures. After the mesh is put up, the chipboard is nailed back on as a temporary outer form, to prevent the mesh from bowing out during the process of filling and tamping the hemp- crete.
Alex White Plume talks with Daniel Nersesian, who is filming a hemp documentary. Far right and far right below: Hempcrete tamped into forms. The walls are now 12 inches thick.
a wheelbarrow dump of hempcrete on the floor. About 90% of the volume of the material is comprised of the hemp shive. The rest is the binder, with just enough water added to make it feel damp. It is a much dryer mixture than, say, concrete or plaster.
Ristan, Tony and Jeremy fill wheelbarrows with freshly- mixed hempcrete. The mixer is to the left, out of the picture. See below for mixer pix. Far right and below: crew fills forms and tamps hempcrete. Lief waits for an opening while John, Kim, Adena and Laurafill and tamp the ‘crete.
Nersesian films the work.
Jeremy and Nate listen to Mario, from American Limetec. John, also from Limetec, is at right in the pic. Far right: Caroline shovels the ‘crete.
Mixing crew primes another batch.
Briggs gets dusty.
Hempcrete Camp – Kiza Park is a very nice spot in which to spend a few tenting days.
Left: Tony, Amy, Laura, Tazia. Right: Andrew, Konnie, Alex.
Kim and Debbie Steele (Alex’s Grand Daughter).
Jen, and Tazia.
Colleen and Briggs (always brings the frisbee for frolf).
Lakota Riders provide rides for hemp house ‘creters.
Nearest: Amy, Lind, Alex, Konnie. Far: Amy, Tazia, kim. Wherever Alex was, there were granddaughters. There was crazy s’mores going on.
Lakota Hempcrete Project May 15-17 2008
The Hemphasis crew has taken the siding off and put mesh up, then temp-nailed the chipboard over the mesh on part of the building. The crew delivers the first mixer load of Hemcrete® of the day.