10 Amazing Buildings Made of Dirt and Straw


1. Impressive cob lounge room.

The Three Little Pigs have nothing on these digs. Ancient technique and modern groove set these structures apart from the little hillside boxes filling our neighborhoods. There are no cookie-cutter house plans here. Just clean, green, natural buildings smoothed from dirt, straw, clay, and loads of ingenuity. No Big Bad Wolf will blow these down.

Image: Gerry Thomasen

2. Hollyhock house mimicks Devon UK styles, on Cortes Island, British Columbia, Canada.

Cob, as this style of construction is known, has been used by crafty home-builders as far back as the 11th century. Evidence of these ultra-stable, fire-resistant structures has been found in North Africa, the Middle East, and, most commonly, Devon, Wales, and Cornwall in the United Kingdom.