Solar and Green Home Ideas from Mother Earth News

Passive Solar Home

Build your own new solar house or add energy saving features to your existing home with the help of these practical guides.  Mother Earth News has provided solid information on many topics related to sustainable living and natural building for several decades, and now many of these articles are available on-line. Here are just a few samples of their green building articles:


Build a Solar Home and Let the Sunshine In
By Dan Chiras
If you're planning to build your dream home someday, this article could save you thousands of dollars. Including simple, passive-solar features in any style home can cost next to nothing up front and save you unbelievable amounts over the long-term in reduced energy bills.

August/September 2002

Go Solar and Save Big!
By Clarke Snell
Every homeowner needs to know that passive solar design results in huge savings on energy bills. This article is a great primer on passive solar design ideas for new and existing homes.

August/September 2006

All About Insulation
by Dan Chiras
Make your home more comfortable and energy-efficient with today's insulation options.
December/January 2002

Natural Swimming Pools
By Douglas Buege and Vicky Uhland
With a minimum of materials and without an arsenal of chemicals, you can build an idyllic water oasis right in your own back yard and thwart summertime's sultry dog days.
August/September 2002

Build a Simple Solar Heater
By Gary Reysa
This low-cost plan lets you turn any south wall into a source of free heat.
December/January 2006


Money Does Grow on Trees

By Marshall Glickman
Proper landscaping can reduce home utility bills by as much as 30 percent.

October/November 1994



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Country Home Plans, Prefabs and Building Kits  Find do-it-yourself building plans as well as professional blueprints for beautiful homes by top North American designers. You'll learn how to have a timeless timber-frame barn home crafted for you, where to find log homes or how to get an energy efficient small home shipped right to your country acres or vacation property as an easy-to-assemble prefab building kit.

Do It Yourself Wind Turbine Building Guide

Do It Yourself Plans for Free Solar and Wind Power  Here's an inexpensive way for do-it-yourselfers to start saving on home energy costs. Earth 4 Energy is a downloadable guide that shows you how to build your own solar panels and your own backyard wind turbine for as little as $200 each.

Do It Yourself Home and Landscape Design Software

Design Your Own Home and Landscape  Plan3D is an online service that helps you create a home (or garage, shed, and room extension), landscape it and lay out furniture.  Everything is online and inexpensive, so you can get started today.