Do you want to learn how to build an Earthship? Do you want to get inspired and motivated by some of Australia’s most experienced Earthship builders and designers? If so read on…

Earthship Ironbank is not just any Earthship… it is the first in Australia to be “sanctioned” by Earthship Biotecture (Taos, USA) and the first to be fully approved by local government! It will also be the first Bed and Breakfast Earthship in Australia, open to all who wish to experience the wonders of Earthship living.

However, it will not be the first Earthship workshop run by Martin (Marty) Freney. Since Earthship Ironbank started, way back in July 2009 when Michael Reynolds came to town, Marty has run about 20 short (half day) workshops to continue building the tyre wall, started by Mike and 25 locals – who pounded 60 tyres in a just a few hours! Since then the tyre wall has grown slowly but surely with many afternoons of tyre pounding here in the forested, semi-rural “suburb” of Ironbank, Adelaide Hills, 25km from the heart of Adelaide.

It will be hard physical work in the middle of summer, pounding tyres, mixing concrete, mud, digging trenches for plumbing… and lots of other “fun” stuff. But, when we can bear the heat no longer there will also be theory and Q&A sessions and of course the chance to meet lots of interesting people and eat lots of delicious, organic, vegetarian and vegan food!

You can come for 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 weeks – choose which weeks suit you.

The rough outline for what is happening each week is as follows (subject to change without notice due to weather conditions and number of participants – no guarantees)

1.       6 Jan 2014 –11 Jan: finish the tyre walls and start the reinforcing (bond beam, buttresses)

2.       13 Jan – 18 Jan: Build the main ferrocement “vault” roof – like the Simple Survival Model Earthship  (great! Now we will have shelter!), greenhouse roof truss construction (on site – carpenters please apply)

3.       20 Jan – 25 Jan: build the parapet wall above the roof (more tyres), bottle wall over vault, footings for internal walls, trenches for plumbing, electrical, start greenhouse construction

4.       27 Jan ­– 1 Feb: finish greenhouse construction, entry and bathroom – ferrocement vault construction with cob (mud and straw) over and lime render finish.

5.       3 Feb – 8 Feb: rendering (inside and out) with earthern and lime renders.

Applications will be closing in November but please contact Marty with any interest and/or inquiries

We are calling for applications via this online questionnaire >>>


Many people have already contacted me and I have started discussions with potential crew members, however I would like everyone to respond to the questionnaire below, so that I get a good understanding of everyone’s background and expectations. It is also an opportunity to make suggestions, raise concerns, ask questions etc. This information will help me put together an effective team with a good range of skills, professions, personalities etc and ultimately a great workshop experience for everyone.

Let me know:

Who you are: what is your background, your strengths, weaknesses, your skills or lack thereof? (It’s ok if you don’t have building skills – you are coming to learn new skills, however we need need a mix of people with some trade skills too)

Why you want to be part of Earthship Ironbank?

When you want to come?

Can you pay the fee?

Do you agree with the terms and conditions (see below).

What are your suggestions?

Please see for full details, background and useful information.

Hope to see you there!