Nature’s Bathroom

Our earthbag home will be FULL of plants, including the bathroom!

I love the idea of my own personal tropical jungle in the bathroom, to relax after a hard day’s work.  Recently, Care2.com had a fantastic green living article on four inspiring bathrooms with plants.  This made me consider how I’ll design our bathroom off-grid, and the ways that getting clean in the wilderness will be different from a bathroom in the city.  Outdoor tubs, solar showers, and a garden bathroom might be in my future!

I’ve seen many people place their bathtubs in the middle of the woods, a meadow, or a private country backyard.  The image of a bathtub just sitting there amongst trees and squirrels is so surreal, it makes me believe in fairy tales of woodland creatures unseen by humans.  One could believe that Mother Nature herself might relax there after a day of creating springtime.  Looking at some bathtubs in which the water is heated from underneath with a real fire burning on logs, one could also believe some crazy person is going to roast themselves alive trying to make a DIY hot tub!

It brings me back in history to the time of the frontier, when people might bathe in a river or stream rather than an indoor shower.  Of course, it still goes on today all over the world where people either don’t have the option to have a fancy indoor bathroom with plumbing, or where people choose to relax and refresh themselves more naturally outdoors – particularly in areas with stunning scenery that often become spas or resorts.

For us, having a dry toilet (a compost toilet) will save so much water and plumbing effort that this back-to-the-land method of bathroom creation seems like a fantastic idea.  It will be a ton of work, too, both to build and maintain.  But let’s not forget the joy of living simply in a beautiful, natural setting.  Sometimes I get so focused on the how-to, that I forget the why.  Incorporating more of nature indoors, where our bathroom will be located, should be fun.  The process itself should be spiritual, inviting living plants to join us in a room dedicated to revitalizing our bodies and minds.

Plants which go well in bathrooms are those varieties that tolerate a humid environment, and don’t need direct sunlight.  I wanted to add a few photos to this post, but, sadly I could not find a bathtub in the wilderness “stock photo” that didn’t cost $2.00 to download!  Perhaps someday we’ll have our own forest escape, and I’ll share photos I take myself.



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