CLAY AND STRAW MORTAR
Clay-building, or earth-building, is as old as the history of farming humanity. In historic Hungary clay and mortar construction flourished both in the Middle Ages and in modern times. Only a few people know, but 20% of the Hungarian residential building stock is still made of clay and straw mortar (based on the data of the Hungarian Statistics Agency for 2011). Most of these buildings are located in rural, country or farmland areas. Although until the first half of the 20th century, folk architecture considered clay and straw mortar to be the most important building material, which is particularly remarkable ten years after the millennium. It is worth considering that if the culture of clay and straw mortar construction had been maintained in such a high proportion and for such a long time in Hungary, what should we do, what can we do for it?
The adobe house is a clay and straw mortar building, whose walls, whether load-bearing or skeletal, are made of clay and straw mortar. In many cases, in an adobe house not only the walls are made of clay and straw mortar, but we can talk about clay and straw mortar floors, plasters, fireplaces, and even in some sense, adobe ceiling structures. Nowadays, natural building materials, such as adobe that is clay and straw mortar, have come to the fore again with the appreciation of the natural lifestyle. Public opinion is slowly turning from looking down on the adobe houses, and the new clay and straw mortar buildings are valued as high quality, healthy living spaces. As a result, a contemporary adobe architecture with modern adobe houses is beginning to develop. It is worth noting that with the help of minor interventions the old adobe buildings can be made into homes that satisfy contemporary needs.