Good dirt in the house? The OC register recently featured an article (that originally ran in the NYT this past Feb.), about the new trend in Mud Floors. (Read AT:NY's take on the original article here). There is a growing breed of homeowners that are switching to using mud as an alternative flooring to hardwood, carpeting or concrete.
The mud used for flooring is generally mixed with lime and sand, two classic components of concrete. Adding sand and fiber is apparently key to helping it control cracking. Obviously, earthen floors are not a new idea, but with the increasing interest in environmental awareness, there's a big interest in natural building materials like mud. Currently it's more popular in the West. The article is an interesting read, as it balances the pros and cons of mud flooring. Some of the benefits include the fact that earthen floors have high density and low conductiviy, allowing it to capture and retain warmth. Also, the cost per square foot is drastically lower than, say, compared to hardwood, and the look is definitely unique with character. Unfortunately, some of the cons are that there currently is no firm standard on how to build them. Also, depending on how the floors are installed, high point loads, such as sharp high heels or certain chair legs can dent them. Read the entire article here. Here is also a post at Treehugger on their take on the article. Would any of you consider installing a mud floor? Have any of you experienced or lived with mud or earthen floors?