Honor the forest. All lumber, with the exception of a few engineered timbers, comes from well-managed forests certified according to the guidelines of the most reputable worldwide forest certification body, the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC*) or is reclaimed from previous use in other structures.
  • Owners of Moore Newton, who supplied much of the new FSC wood throughout the house, have personally toured the forests where this lumber was harvested, and they are among the healthiest and most natural in the world.
  • Wood selection criteria included:
    • Performance characteristics, including durability.
    • Life-cycle impacts, including extraction, manufacturing processes, and transportation.
    • Environmental provenance (social/cultural/local economy, regenerative value, etc.).
    • Environmental certification (FSC, recycled, reclaimed, salvaged).
    • Adhesives and off gassing.

* FSC is Forest Stewardship Council. See www.fscus.org. SFI is Sustainable Forestry Initiative, a program of the mainstream wood and paper industry designed to compete with FSC. SFI is not considered comparable in rigor by the environmental community nor by green building leaders and was not an acceptable certification for our wood.

Wood details

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  • Exterior doors & windows – Portuguese eucalyptus was selected out of four FSC-certified species considered (the others were Western larch, Oregon pine, and Meranti mahogany). Eucalyptus met the dual criteria of avoiding tropical hardwoods and passing the strength and durability requirements of the large windows and doors needed to achieve the daylighting goals for the house.
  • Structural timbers & trusses – FSC-certified Douglas fir from the Potlatch Corporation was chosen. Potlatch is the first US-based producer with dual certification – FSC and SFI (see note) – and this choice supports their pioneering adoption of dual certification. FSC-certified Western larch and reclaimed Douglas fir were also considered.
  • Plywood for the project is FSC-certified and manufactured within 500 miles of the home.
  • Exterior siding, interior paneling & millwork – The design team chose FSC certified #2 clear Western Red Cedar KD for its aesthetic and performance characteristics.
  • Interior doors and cabinets –The FSC White Oak used is harvested from a Pennsylvania forest that has been managed by the same family for 10 generations. This forest is open to hikers, breathtaking in its beauty, and as healthy as a forest can be.
  • Wide-plank flooring – 18th- century reclaimed American granary oak was chosen for its warm, rustic appearance and hardness. It is being provided by Restoration Timber a pioneering FSC-certified manufacturer of reclaimed wood flooring, stair components, and millwork. The fact that we can take 150 year old wood and reuse it for another 150 years is further validation that the excessive use of finishes and chemicals is unnecessary in most installations.
  • Wine Cellar – FSC Bamboo racks made by Eco-WineRacks are free of stains or colorants and feature a water based, Acrylic, Low VOC finish. All packaging came from recycled materials.
  • Many unique pieces of salvaged wood are in the house provided by the guru of urban salvage, Evan Shively of Arborica. He salvages fallen trees from urban forests, freeways, golf courses, etc. He stores his finds in tact in massive barns at his Marshall showroom. Evan collaborated with us on both installed and furniture pieces including:
    • Pond area decking – cypress
    • Kitchen countertop – walnut
    • Tables – elm
  • All non-native trees from the original site were logged and reused on site either as garden features, playground elements or mulch.
  • All wood will remain unfinished except in damp locations, drastically limiting use of chemicals.
  • Wood in damp locations will be treated with non-toxic, zero-VOC, bio-based sealer (citrus wax or tung oil).
  • Zero painted surfaces.
The Project