Tryon Farm, the outdoor site for CB2’s summer catalog, is a working, sustainable community for residents who see themselves as caretakers of the land—who value the simple joys of being in natural settings, care about the conservation and preservation of open space, and steward the wise use of resources.
The mission of Tryon Farm is to build and maintain a healthy environment, an energetic community, a nurturing home; and to protect or re-establish mainstays of the regional landscape—farmlands, woods, prairies, wetlands.
Originally a 170-acre dairy farm in northwest Indiana, new simple houses and lofts are clustered in seven “settlements”. From farmstead to woods to meadows, each is distinct—defined by its natural elements.
For example, the Farmstead settlement comprises the farmhouse, barns and sheds that were the original farm, and in the Pond settlement, homes recede into the landscape near a pond that’s a native habitat for frogs, minnows and herons.
To accomplish their goals, they insist on using clean sewer water for irrigation, controlling storm water, keeping night lighting low, minimizing road building—and their natural wetlands sewage system operates independently of a municipal system. Architects carefully design to the landscape so window placement takes full advantage of the sun for lighting and winds for ventilation—not to mention the beauty of expansive views.
One key aspect of any sustainable venture is the maintenance or repurposing of existing structures. So the old farmhouse was converted into a bed and breakfast and the barn is a community center for potluck suppers, association meetings and viewing old movies.
Regular and seasonal events are diverse and include workshops on conservation and planning of rural and urban areas, advice on organic gardening and landscaping, bicycle repair sessions, feeding goats and chickens, splitting wood for fires, and bonfire circle suppers.
Next Saturday, April 17, from 10am to 3pm, help plant 1,200 tree saplings as a windbreak on the edge of a rolling alfalfa field. Reward is an informal lunch in the old Tryon dairy barn with music, stories and a salute to Mother Earth. Register at Earth Day Tree Lunch.
Thanks to curtis, catalog art director, for all on location photography.