Integrated Living Systems Design LLC
Soil to Soul

Home Remodel Hawaii

My friend Hugh purchased a home in Hawaiian Beaches. It needed some work. He requested that the home be wheelchair accessible and have a visual barrier of useful, edible, plants with showy, fragrant flowers.

Water is captured from the roof and driveway and invited into beds around the perimeter. The home is raised up and bordered by gravel to increase drainage. The site receives 100+ " of annual rainfall.


The site was originally covered by two undesirable plants: Elephant grass and stink miale. Several days were spent clearing and cleaning the site so that it could be planted.


The back yard was covered in vines and large Albizia trunks. The vines and grass were meticulously removed and the trunks were pushed back to form a large raised bed along the back boundary of the land.


Bananas, Papayas, Manioc, Kukui and other fast growing plants were planted in soil mix mounded along the boarder.


These boarders quickly fill in creating a multi-functional barrier.


Neighboring homes disappear behind a wall of fragrant, flowering, food!


The backyard has transformed into a garden with shade trees and nooks to sit quietly in contemplation.


Perennial peanut was attempted as the ground cover but it required more maintenance to establish than was budgeted for. Ultimately grass has taken over and now occupies the lawn space between the trees.


The raised beds in the back are highly productive and dense enough to block out the adjacent homes.


Kukui nuts group seeded in one pot form a dense thicket once planted in the ground.


Clumps of trees like these are great for windy sites. While initially over planted, the trees will select through self thinning and eventually one large tree will prevail.


A dense jungle ambiance is created around the home far enough to allow for ample ventilation.


Home-scale food forest are fun to make, easy to maintain and provide many benefits.

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