Natural Hydraulic Lime on Hempcrete

At TransMineral USA, we have recently been following a hempcrete building project from Beate Kirmse and her husband, Bern Galvin. The structure, in Rolling Hills, California, is the first permitted hemp building in California. The walls are formed from hempcrete, which is the result of a mixture of lime and hemp. Since hemp is not allowed to be industrially grown in the United States, it has been near impossible to successfully get a permit to use it in a structure. According to Hemp Technologies, a supplier of hemp hurds, hempcrete has a superior R-value to other green building options. The thickness of hempcrete can be adjusted to meet the thermal requirements of the structure’s climate. And, among numerous other advantages, hempcrete is the perfect substrate for earth and lime plasters, such as natural hydraulic lime.

For the Rolling Hills project, Beate Krimse called our office and discussed the project. We agreed that using NHL 3.5 and EcoMortar F-2 would be a good combination for the exterior walls. NHL 3.5 was used for the scratch and brown coats, while the EcoMortar was applied as the exterior finish coat. Find more details on Beate’s post, Breathable Lime Finish.

To follow the couple’s project, please visit their website:

Sonoma County Strawbale House Receives Award from Green Builder® Media

Private Residence, SonomaA Sonoma County strawbale home won a 2013 Green Builder® Media Green Home of the Year award. The home was recognized in the Best Exterior Integration category. This LEED Platinum home features Saint-Astier Natural Hydraulic Lime over a strawbale structure. The farmhouse sits on a 32-acre site that includes covered walkways, gardens, and gabled structures. Additionally, there is a living roof and solar electricity.

Bruce Hammond of Hammond & Company

Daniel Smith & Associates Architects

Selecting a Natural Hydraulic Lime

The Last StrawThe Last Straw, No. 62 featured an article by Michel Couvreux called “Selecting a Natural Hydraulic Lime: What to Look For

In the article, Michel discusses the following:

  • Definitions
  • Norms and Standards
  • Misleading Information

Visit The Last Straw to download or purchase the entire issue, or click to read the article via pdf.

2013 California Preservation Award

The Huntington Japanese House and Gardens

Kelly Sutherlin McLeod Architecture, Inc.

The restoration of The Huntington Japanese House and Gardens recently won a 2013 California Preservation Award. This project preserves a unique cultural landscape, including the internationally renowned conservation of the Japanese House and restoration of one of the oldest-surviving Japanese Gardens in the United States.

3-coat lime plaster on metal lath was used for the restoration. Lime paint was also used extensively throughout the project.

View more information from the architectural firm, Kelly Sutherlin McLeod Architecture, Inc.

The restoration of The Huntington Japanese House and Gardens has also won the following awards:

2012 American Institute of Architects
Los Angeles Chapter, Design Award

2012 American Institute of Architects
Pasadena Foothill Chapter, Merit Award

2012 Planet Award

SAB Homes 7 – Old day Plasters, New day Design

Source: SABMag

Even in the innovative and rapidly changing world of green building, some of the old ways and traditional materials are often the best. For thousands of years, natural clay and lime plasters have been used to create beautiful and long-lasting interior and exterior finishes. While these materials continue to be used extensively throughout the world, they have been largely replaced in North America by cement and acrylic stuccos.

Read the article on the SAB website

Cal Poly Pomona’s Concrete Canoe Team

calpolyLime from TransMineral USA, Inc. was used by Cal Poly Pomona’s Concrete Canoe Team.

Read about Cal Poly Pomona’s Concrete Canoe Team

Classic Walls

Source: Green Building Product Dealer, Jan/Feb 2010

“One of the strongest markets for lime plaster is in restoration. ‘The reason for that,’ says Michel Couvreux of TransMineral USA, ‘is that we have a real material.'”

Read the article online or via PDF

The Read Building Wins Award

Source: Berkeley Design Advocates

The Berkeley Design Advocates have named The Read Building as one of six outstanding structures in the City of Berkeley for 2009-2010. The Read Building features Saint Astier Natural Hydraulic Lime Plaster.

Read Building

Tale of Two Homes

San Francisco Bay Area Media

Today “green” construction comes in many different colors and flavors, depending on the style, need, material, criteria, architect, contractor, designer, environment, and much more. Two very different green homes in the San Francisco Bay Area were recently highlighted in detailed profiles, both finding St. Astier Lime Plaster to be the ideal solution for their exterior finishes.

Hillsborough Mansion – Read Online or via PDF

Palo Alto Re-Imagining the House – Read Online or via PDF

Lime Plaster

Source: Fine Homebuilding

limeplaster“What makes TransMineral USA’s lime-based plaster, mortar, and paint green? Most notably, their products contain no VOCs and no polymers, so there’s no off-gassing. The plaster Fine Homebuilding editor Chris Ermides reports on comes premixed (just add color) and applies in two coats. The result is a durable, smooth wall finish sealed with an olive-based sealant. The cost is $1 per sq. ft. for materials or $8 per sq. ft. for materials and application by a contractor-well worth it if you’re one of the millions of Americans with chemical sensitivities.”

View article and video.