Mar 3 - OC Builder Gives Stylish New Meaning to "Green House"

Solar power, a native plant garden, recycled rice straw insulation, permeable granite pavement, and beams of recycled wood are just a few of the features that make an Orange County home "green." From Kelly Garrison of the Orange County Register:

Steps wind around a nautilus-shaped stairwell and down its sporadically angled walls. Each room of this house is coated in hues from cream to plum with nontoxic paint. It fully heats, cools and energizes itself with earth elements. Pipes rush hot water below the concrete floor, warming the surface and rooms above. Light reflects off of abalone shells fitted into rocks on the fireplace.

The kitty door â€" a paw-print-shaped hole in the kitchen wall â€" lets two cats meander outside at their leisure.

Christopher Prelitz and his wife, Becky, call this organic structure home.

"The solutions are easy and don't cost a lot," Becky says.

Their house was built into a funnel-shaped lot in Bluebird Canyon in Laguna Beach. A native and edible plant garden sits at the foundation of the three-story home.

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