5. Design of yurt

This design is moved to https://annemoloneypermaculture.wordpress.com, my permaculture portfolio site, here it is ready for presentation and first assessment.

Photo of yurt from Soleah on the island of Als, summer of 2015.

The yurt project at Fejø Retreat is as most of the designs in this diploma proces one detail of the complete and final Fejø Retreat design which I have been working on since my PDC in 2009. The final design of Fejø Retreat (in this diploma proces)  is scheduled to be ready by Nov. 2016 and you are welcome to follow the proces by following the link.

For this specific yurt design I have use Design Web as well as SADIMET. Hopefully in years to come this yurt will contribute to the regeneration of all 5 elements, which among other things mean carbon storing for the earth and more happy and fulfilled lives for the people as well as cleaner air and cleaner water.

Ethics of permaculture.
Since we are a retreat center with many volunteers primarily during summer season we need a nice and cosy place for them to live.
We have housed them in the bedrooms of the house so far, but since we are also working on a livelihood for Fejø Retreat, we want the furnished bedrooms to be available for paying guests who can benefit from nature therapy, garden therapy or participation in some of the courses and events that we run throughout the year.
So, for one thing, the yurt is caring for people.
The way it is built cares for nature since the “ecological footprint” of a yurt like this is small. The materials for the roof poles is hazel and willow poles harvested on the premises, and the roof and wall cover as well as the insulation is from second hand, brought kindly to us by one of the participant of our local permaculture and transition network; he runs a small business for The Salvation Army on emptying the containers of surplus from the Copenhagen area. There is no digging or concrete, this is taking care of nature and recycling surplus.

The zoning.
We want the yurt not too far from the main house and our barn kitchen, and we also want it close to The Healing Garden and a little bit sheltered from the road. We also want a good shelter from the winds, even though it is a summer yurt with a season from April till mid October. So we place the yurt in zone 2. The yellow dot is the yurt.


Permaculture principles –

1. Observe and interact
We have done a lot of observation on how to best meet our need for more accommodation facility. Also we hope the the yurt and the building of it can help us decide whether or not a yurt can be a solution for future needs for more indoor space, since The Healing Garden needs more space for drying, storing and processing the plants – another yurt might be a future solution for this need.
2. Catch and store energy
The yurt will not as such catch energy; but it will provide the volunteers with a shelter from outdoor heat and cold because it is insulated. In another sense, though, the yurt will catch the energy of the volunteers since they bring so much inspiration and learning opportunities to our venue.
3. Obtain a yield
The yurt will be helpful in obtaining a yield, a the furnished indoor rooms will be available for paying guests, who might also purchase some of our other products.
4. Apply regulation and accept feed back
The yurt is a good example of applying self regulation and accepting feedback, since we have seen our need for more space for accommodation during the summer season for quite a while – but we do not want to invest a large sum of money in building guest rooms that will be vacant all through the winter.
5. Use and value renewable ressources and services
We are definitely valuing and using renewable resources by our cooperation with the Salvation Army using surplus from the city that would elsewise have been burnt, only producing district heating
6. Produce no waste
The yurt production produces  very little waste.
7. Design from pattern to detail
Since we have the overall pattern og the design og Fejø Retreat, the yurt project is one of the details.
8. Integrate rather than segregate
The yurt is an integrational solution, it binds the premises of The Healing Garden together with the retreat facility. Also it leads the mind to non carbon emissive solutions and towards the connectedness of our human species all over the Planet.
9. Use small and slow solutions
Building and using the yurt is one example of many small and slow solutions at Fejø Retreat and The Healing Garden on Fejø
10. Use and value diversity
The building af the yurt shows the use and value of diversity. We already have rooms that are built in the barn as accommodation facility and we have built the strippable cabin as a guest house. We use a tipi as a wind shield and shelter for one of our mulching toilets during the summer time.
11. Use edges and value the marginal
Who would think of thrown away, junk bedclothes and old sails and tents as a new and functional facility for sleeping in close contact with nature ?  Doing this we are demonstrating the use of edges and valuing the marginal. The yurt also invites to other functions than wwoof´er accommodation, it can be a quiet space for meditation during meditative garden weeks – and, well, time will tell.
which is primary function for the time being.
12. Creatively use and respond to change.
The number of people who need accommodation varies a lot from winter to summer season. During the winter we only live the two of us here on a permanent basis, maybe we have a lodger and maybe one or two volunteers. During the summer we have several volunteers and guests for courses, events and nature & garden therapy. The building af the yurt as primarily a summer accommodation facility for volunteers is both a use of the change and a creative way to respond to it.


Using the Design Web and SADIMET overlap to some extent.

But, for the purpose of this design I will go through the parts of both the Design Web and the SADIMET.

Design Web
Our overall vision is that a lot of inspiration for a sustainable and regenerative world flows from Fejø retreat and The Healing Garden.
We want flexible and multifunctional space, we want to be able to say yes to all volunteers and visitors, and we see in our future several yurts and tipis on the land. More people will see the potential of Fejø Retreat and of Fejø as a whole and it will help the overall settling of newcomers on the island from a sustainable and regenerative segment of younger people.
We have many people in our network who will be willing and able to help, this is a great ressource. In this “people & network ressource pool” we found the workshop leader, Soleah Delani.
We also found Troels, and islander, who has made the then and the khan wall poles.
We have internet access which is extremely helpful for information seeking, among many other things this video:

We have access to tools and land and we have the money that will ne needed for buying stuff and to cover the travelling expenses of the workshop leader.
It is also helpful that we have the attitude of liking to do an experiment like this, in many ways it would be easier to just buy the thing, ready made – but there would be much less fun and much less learning experience.
We also have the gift of planning, and as a couple it is of great help y´that our thoughts and ideas match, otherwise it would be difficult to agree on solutions like this.
The limits that we identify consists of lack of craftsman skills and lack of time, we have too many projects going on. Insecurity of how difficult it will actually be takes a lot of energy and also, there is the lazy side, just wanting to do nothing. And what about insurance? And laws and rules – is it at all legal to accommodate volunteers in what is basically a tent?

IDEA part of the Design Web also has to do with the survey regarding client´s needs and ressources.
We have discovered helpful patterns at our venue regarding the ability to start and run projects with a loving, caring and joyful energy. Over the years living here at Fejø Retreat we have built the strawbale cabin, a small tipi, The Healing Garden and while doing what we were doing we always have focus on thriving in the proces which is productive regarding a positive atmosphere.
We are good researchers and we have in our real life research visited Soleah and seen her yurt (see photo above) as well as another yurt, which was bought from new as ” a real” mongolian yurt, verý beautiful. – we actually had the opportunity to buy this yurt (for 40.000 d.kr), but decided that time and money was spent better if we run a workshop and create a loving and learning experience as well as using local skills and materials.
We expect the expenses to be around 5.000 d.kr
time spent: 8 persons 6 hours a day for 5 whole days: around 250 hours pls the time I have used for research and planning.
The participants in the workshop get accommodation for free and pay for their own travel costs, that is their gift to the project. We ask them to contribute to the food during the week by donating food and/or money.

jeannieoggarrysyurtPhoto af Jeannie and Garrys´s yurt from late october 2015

The evasive patterns identified have to do with too much mess, too many things, too much involvement, and tiredness.
We want to build the yurt as a summer facility which means we will not need a floor; building the floor can be a separate project for 2017 and eventually installing an oven and chimney. We want to build it as a workshop in order to create a learning experience for a group of people, who can carry on the skills and knowledge gained.
INTEGRATION is a parallel to the functions in the analysis phase as well as the placement in the actual design proces of SADIMET.
There are many sub systems:
1 The planning of the yurt and how to make the different parts. a)  khana, b) outside cover, c)  inside cover, d)  insulation, e)  roof, f) skylight, g) door, h) floor cover, i) round tree bearer of the skylight, h) the interior like pallet beds and “indian backrests”.
2) Which tools will be needed
3) The economy, what will it cost in hard currency, in gifts and time
4) Getting the different materials, as much as possible second hand
5) Planning the workshop
6) Sending invitations to participants and postings on internet

When we move to the ACTION phase, it has to do with planning due to the above scheme. This resembles the implementation phase of the SADIMET
– and of course running the actual workshop which is planned at Easter 2016 with 6 participants plus myself and Soleah.
We will raise “the party tent” as an outdoor workshop facility, use the 1.st floor in the barn as the sowing workshop as well as dining – we can also use the “alrum” as a dining room, if the weather is fine we can also use the sunroom and we have 3 bedrooms for accommodation.
– But I have not yet planned the workshop in details and I have not yet written the internet postings, but this is due to happen during the hopefully first week of January.
A storing facility for the yurt during the winter months is crucial, and for this we have a cabin in The Healing Garden.

survey of the client´s values, goals and needs.

survey phase, looking at the site, the areas of cost, and the resources of the client.

survey regarding client´s needs and ressources.

After we have created the yurt during the workshop we shall use the yurt over summer. It is going to be exciting to see how it will work, how we will maintain, reflect, tweak and celebrate. These phases are not yet designed.

I did a posting in Danish: https://annemoloney.wordpress.com/2015/09/24/min-yurte-10/



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