Permaculturing in Portugal

One family's attempts to live in a more planet-friendly way


Both buildings on the quinta are being worked on at the moment. A while ago we fitted locally-made chestnut doors and windows to the smaller building, and today it got a new roof.

Smaller building on the quinta

Smaller building on the quinta


Smaller building on the quinta


Although the roof looks no different, it’s been transformed beneath the tiles. Previously it was simply tile battens across chestnut joists with terracotta tiles on the battens.

Tiled roof from the inside

Now it has a similar construction to the larger building. 22mm rough timber on the chestnut joists, followed by 50mm cork insulation, followed by breathable membrane, followed by tile battens, then tiles, with a skirt of schist slabs around the wall heads as is the more recent tradition in this area. Originally the building would have had a roof entirely of schist stone, but the angle of the walls on the upper floor show what the weight of that can do to a structure …

The old window shutters have been refitted on the inside of the double-glazed windows to provide extra insulation in winter, and something similar will be done with the old upstairs door, though fitting it outside the new glass door rather than inside. Now we just have to plug all the holes in the walls, pointing the stonework with clay subsoil we can dig from the hill immediately behind the house.

On the larger building, the chestnut balcony framework is now complete, and the wooden floor has been laid. The balcony will be getting terracotta roof tiles similar to the ones used for the smaller building.



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1 Comment

  1. mike April 20, 2011

    that balcony is going to be wonderful in the cool summer evenings… imagine the light and the colors after a strong day

    drinking chilled ‘horchata’

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