Sustainable Living

A Worm Farm Waste System is a vital part of sustainable living

In March 2016 we installed a Worm Farm Waste System for Anne Macrae who was building a sustainable living solution in Drysdale just outside of Geelong. On 15 October 2017 we attended the Sustainable House Day along with Anne, a very content sustainable house owner. For more information regarding our environmentally sustainable system call 03 5979 1887 or contact us via email.

Anne Macrae’s story
My own power, food & water

“As the years have progressed I have become increasingly aware of our dwindling resources on our planet. This linked with a passion for healthy living started me dreaming about living as sustainable and natural a lifestyle as possible.

The opportunity to build became available in the middle of a 100 acre sheep paddock. My brief to the architect (Tim) was to build a house oriented to benefit maximum thermal performance whilst taking in the extensive bay views to the east.   Other critical components were to have an outdoor space protected from the S-W winds and to feel as if the outdoors was coming in.

‘At one with the land’

The predominant living area is in the north/south wing, with the west wing for family and visitors and is currently being set up for future Air B’nB (to help generate an income in retirement).

Throughout construction to achieve sustainable living, the builder and I researched and selected materials, fixtures and fittings to maximise quality, aesthetics, value, energy efficiency and overall sustainability. We reused, recycled, repurposed as much as possible including using the clay from the foundations to build rammed earth fireplaces to house the wood heaters.

The next part of the project which is under construction is an edible garden, planting of native and indigenous trees and plants and a zen garden providing multi-sensory relaxation area.

The home was a 2017 National Finalist in HIA (Housing Industry of Australia) Greensmart Awards.

Anne’s story

Sustainable living features



House type

Newly completed in 2017


Farm change, future Air B’n’B, self-sustainable living, building for the future, minimising cost of living, minimising carbon footprint

Building type

Split face block veneer, two-story

Sustainable design

Passive solar house requires an active owner to maximise benefits

Sustainable living materials

Split face concrete blocks, Australian cypress timber (pergolas, deck and some internal) hardwood windows, upcycled vanity units, low VOC paints and oils, water based floor sealer, recycled fence palling bed heads, recycled flooring feature island bench and upcycled furniture

Energy efficiency

7 star rating, LED Lighting, electric low energy appliances, low flow tapware, cool store room, double glazed windows, additional draft sealing and insulation

Renewable energy

5.2 kW PV solar system with future battery pre-wiring, power monitoring

Heating & cooling

Combustion wood heater (installed in rammed earth fire places for extra thermal mass) with air transfer ducting, passive cooling – cross flow ventilation, ceiling fans, concrete floor for thermal mass

Water heating

Sanden heat exchange pump

Fixtures & fittings

Low energy consumption electric appliances, water saving taps, external rotary clothes line

Water harvesting

2 x 22,500 litres tanks connected to whole house


Under construction: edible garden, indigenous planting – edible, shrubs and trees, native tree shrubs and trees plus a zen garden

Waste management

Worm farm waste system


Anne Macrae’s new house in Drysdale