May 18-19: Root Cellar Work Party

Remember those community root cellar grants were we talking about several months ago?  Curious about what’s going on?  Well, the Deanery Project in Ship Harbour, our first grant recipient, is hosting a root cellar work party on May 18-19 and you’re invited to attend.

Kick it Root Down: Work Party @ The Deanery Project

When: May 18th-19th (Friday-Saturday). 10 am-5 pm.

Where: The Deanery Project

37 Deanery Road, Lower West Ship Harbour

What to bring: lunch/food for potluck supper(s), good work clothes and songs, as we’ll be rolling down each night with a jam session/potluck supper. If you’d like to stay over night, please bring sleeping bag/pillow/mat etc.

Why: After receiving a Community Root Cellar Grant through the Ecology Action Centre, the Deanery Project building team has unearthed many natural designs for our basement Root Cellar space.

The Plan is to construct wattle and daub walls, insulated with locally sourced wool. Most of the materials (i.e. sand, clay, small dimensional round wood) will be harvested in the immediate area in and about the Deanery grounds.

From Dartmouth take Main Street/Highway 107 out of Dartmouth (direction Eastern Shore).

Follow the #107 for about 25 minutes.

At the “T” intersection – turn right into Musquodoboit Harbour – follow the old #7 highway east for about another 20 minutes, passing through Lake Charlotte – the next community is Ship Harbour

Just past Family Fries restaurant on the right, turn right down the Lower Ship Harbour Rd. Follow for 5 km. (past the Church) is Deanery Rd. on your left.

For more information or to RSVP: Email Gregory at

4 thoughts on “May 18-19: Root Cellar Work Party

  1. Hi, I’m interested in the wool insulation, will it be washed or stuffed into the walls and how much will you require? I ask as I live on our family sheep farm and are currently looking into wool insulation as a commodity.

    • Hi Ruth,

      It’s exciting to hear that you’re looking into wool insulation as a commodity. Greg, who is the contact at the Deanery, can be reached at Feel free to contact him directly to ask. (I’ll also send him a note and see if he’ll respond to the blog comment, so that we can all see the answer.)


    • Hey, sorry about the late response!

      I was planning on washing the wool we had, but i’ve experimented with hanging the wool out in the rain (over a baseball cage at the Deanery). It seems to have removed most of the debris you wouldn’t want in your walls…I’ve done some research on this topic, and this link ( might help answer your questions as far as cleaning the wool of dirt, debris, and lanolin with a washer.

      The plan is to soak the wool in a borax solution (we’re using two 10 gallon buckets of hot water, with a 76 oz box of 20 Mule Team Borax mixed into each bucket). After soaking, we’re going to let it dry out in the sun a few days before stuffing it into the walls, but we do NOT want to rinse it out! Wool, being very water soluble, will get diluted of our desired alkilinity if we rinse it with just water. This soaking will repel any insects from living in -or laying eggs into- our insulation. Borax also acts as a fire retardant.

      I hope this answers your question…I think the two 10 gallon buckets of Borax solution will do for the amount of wool we have (upwards of 100 gallons of raw wadmal, stuffed in buckets.

      hope to see you this upcoming weekend!
      -Greg H. (Deanery Board member)

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