Growing houses from trees in Detroit, USA


United States

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  • Description


    An intentional community of anarcho-qweirdos dedicated to growing houses with living trees, or at first, trees that can replace a concrete foundation.

    So far, I've built out a little pod to ride out the winter inside a gutted 5,000 ft² (400m2 or something) 100 year old house, which will serve as the home base for the project and a residence for those working on the forest (myself included). The house is on the corner and the rest of the block is for the trees. The mother tree, an American sycamore is in the ground but only 3 inches tall with two leaves this year. One day, I hope the field will be a forest full of tree houses. None of the spaces you'll be helping to renovate will be for paying guests in the future, this project is part of the free economy and a gift to the world. Hopefully a great one!

    About me: I believe deeply in both hospitality and labor. I've spent much of the last ten years hosting though couch surfing. Now, I'm trying to reorganize my life around the goal of growing a house with trees, and since some of my best experiences with couch surfers were working on this old house, it made sense to migrate over to this site. At the moment, I work full time as a forensic engineer. I ride bikes and play the banjo. 2021: the year of good gut health.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Charity Work
    Art Projects
    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We could learn how to grow trees into a house! Also, I can teach you how to learn the banjo.

  • Help


    There's three big bins of help:
    1) ordinary stuff like cooking, cleaning, yardchores, gardening, laundry, and shopping.
    2) home rennovations like sanding, scraping, painting, insulating, glazing, carrying, cetera, nothing to replace skilled tradesmen
    3) projects including seed collection, germination, planting, irrigation, fertilization, grafting, research, planning...and the unknown!

    Stamina beats experience, eventually.

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    Russian: Intermediate
    German: Beginner
    Spanish: Beginner
    French: Beginner
    Hebrew: Beginner
    Italian: Beginner
    Thai: Beginner

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    You can contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    My little room in the big house is just for me, but I have my old apartment that's currently available. Two bedrooms, one queen bed, one full bed. Also a pretty comfy couch, but it does get old after awhile. Camping and facilities are available at the project site. Ideally, we can share some oatmeal in the morning, a sumptuous lunch after work, and none will go hungry.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    My extra apartment is in north corktown and the project site is in a neighborhood just north of the Eastern market. I have bikes to share and commute between the two spots is an excellent part of the city. Detroit is really an amazing city, good spirit here.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    I'm doing my best to keep the normal internet out of my own home, but there are certainly lots of places around town where you can find free, good internet.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    I have a little driveway and a big field where you can camp

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    8-12 M-F

Host ref number: 143285713593