ArchDaily heads to the beach for a look at Kurreki ("Bush Myrtle" in the Worimi language), a net-zero Aussie surf retreat in Seal Rocks, New South Wales, from Bourne Blue Architecture. Features of the "uncomplicated holiday home" include rainwater recycling, the use of hyperlocal building materials, a 1.5 kW solar system, a big ole' outdoor shower, and one hell of a shaded hammock deck. 


Gizmodo feasts its eyes upon Dutchess House No.1, a low-impact and aluminum-clad country retreat in upstate New York. Grzyiwinski + Pons is the firm behind this truly lovely weekend escape from the big, bad city. 


EcoSalon settles on "20 Tiny Houses We'd Be Happy to Squeeze Into." A bit late to the tiny house appreciation party, but some pretty photogenic — albeit claustrophobia-inducing and not always practical — picks to be found here.


The Los Angeles Times enjoys a quick chat with Kyle Schuneman, DIY design demigod and the author of the soon-to-be-released "The First Apartment Book: Cool Design for Small Spaces" (Clarkson Potter/Random House). 


TreeHugger wrangles up "10 Gardens Prettier Than a Lawn — and More Water-Efficient, Too." Picks from resident TH greenthumb Ramon Gonzalez include a perennial flower bed in Ontario, a parkway garden in Chicago, a backyard food forest in California, and a xeriscape garden in Missouri. 


Gawker dishes out more IKEA-related news that has nothing to do with Allen wrenches or delicious meatballs: the world-dominating Swedish home furnishings retailer is planning on erecting yet another district, this one in Hamburg, Germany. As you may recall, IKEA's land-grabbing overlords have another mini-city in the works in East London.


Dwell gets its slideshow on with a look inside (and outside) of A3, a woodsy, minimalist home in the coastal Mississippi outpost of Ocean Springs. Packed with sustainable features, the home was designed and built (and photographed) by Brett Nave of Studio BNA Architects

EcoHome provides a brief overview of the Pecan Street Project in Austin's super-sustainable, 700-acre mixed-use Mueller development where the symbiotic relationship between electric vehicles and smart homes is being examined by several teams of researchers over the next five years. Says Pecan Street's executive director, Brewster McCracken (best name ever?):"We hope Pecan Street’s research will speed up the innovation cycle around smart grid and consumer electronic technology. Electric vehicles represent a significant addition to home’s energy profile, and understanding that impact and how consumers use and charge their vehicles is critically important.”


Apartment Therapy braves the hellish bowels of the Javits Center in order to share a handful of green goodies spotted at the summer 2012 edition of the New York International Gift Fair.


Co.Design spreads the word that Weiss/Manfredi and OLIN have beat out several other in-the-running firms and will oversee the extensive revamping/redesign of Washington's National Mall (AKA "America's Front Yard.") More specifically, the winning firms will be giving the grounds around the National Monument a 21st century makeover.



Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Playing catch up: Before-you-go-to-the-beach reads
Yours truly has been holed up all week in a sleepy Delaware beach town. Although most of my reading has involved complete trash, here's a few quality green home