Solar warmth

September 1, 2014

Who doesn’t like having the early morning sun cascading over their shoulder and spilling upon one’s lap. I certainly do.


Aside from sitting in my cushioned red chair sipping morning coffee, the more delicious awakening to the day actually comes with the warming touch of the sun. In its gentle bathing, it is a reminder that the world — despite what is in the TV news — can be a wondrous place.

But my sun’s rays aren’t coming directly into the house. They first must pass through the atrium and, in so doing, leave behind some of their heat for the cactus, the aloe plants and the air itself.


The photo shows the division between the atrium and the house itself. Running down the middle are the three sets of French doors that, when closed, keep the heat in the atrium, or when open, allow the sun’s winter beneficence into the house.

In the summer the interior French doors are kept closed and the bamboo curtains dropped down from ceiling to floor. The exterior green windows and door of the atrium are then opened to allow the heat to escape to the outside. Thereby, keeping the house cool. Well, in theory anyway.

Whenever I open the interior doors in winter, what always feels me with a certain childish delight is to see the hanging Peace flags flap upwards with the strength of the incoming heat. Passive solar design made visible.

Here is a one minute video of this process. Notice the unintentional ascetic of the longer flag flying at the same angle as the incoming sun.

solar sun from Peter Adams on Vimeo.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Judy Kohin September 7, 2014 at 12:45 am

Peter! Just stopped in your blog for a quick visit…ah, the beauty of your house, your land, your garden, your creative things. I long for a visit to your incredible sanctuary. Thanks for sharing your life and your images continue to inspire and uplift. Have a lovely day,

from Colorado, friend of the Davis sisters. I visited in early 2012 with my sister.

Wendy September 4, 2014 at 7:28 pm

Good demo!
PS Got a little side-tracked looking for the ‘unintentional ascetic’ – would have thought you were more of an intentional one myself ;-)

Ruth Gaynes September 2, 2014 at 12:13 am

My little house sits mostly in shade, but I may be able to put solar panels on the back of the roof.

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