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Learn about Straw Bale Walls

Straw Bale Walls

Straw bales are a natural building material with a high insulation value, that can be used to build walls that have R-values of R35, R40 or more. Various straw bale systems are available, including load-bearing straw bale, straw bale infill (in timber framing), and prefabricated straw bale panels.

Consider whether you want timber-frame with straw insulation, load-bearing straw bale, or pre-made straw panels.

Look for straw bale builders in your region with a track record and a portfolio that appeals to you and consider where the straw is grown; it may available in your area.

A variety of beautiful and durable exterior and interior finishes are available for straw bale walls.

Natural plant product, produced with low embodied energy from a renewable resource that actually stores carbon from the atmosphere in the straw. Straw bale walls have no off-gassing, are more fire-resistant than wood stud walls, and keep energy bills low with their high insulation factor. With the right designer and contractors, you can also do some of the work yourself if you want to, as straw bales are fairly easy to work with.

One of the earlier straw bale structures in North America, a schoolhouse built around 1897 in the Sandhills area of Nebraska, was reportedly eaten by cows in 1902. After that, people started applying plaster to the outside of straw houses.