An expansive four-building modern residence recently completed construction on a former pecan farm a few miles outside of Houston. Developed on his family’s 210-acre ranch, David Wersebe, who works in the mineral royalty business in Houston, designed the nearly 6,000 square-foot project himself and hired an architect to draw up the plans for construction.
The residence, which is currently on the market, blends elements of its original pecan orchard site with materials complementary to the environment. Hand-cut Texas limestone and hand-hewn beams from a 200-year-old Amish barn frame the expansive entry, and large-scale custom metal windows open to the native landscape. Kebony, a global leader in the production of sustainable modified wood, was carefully selected to clad all four facades, reflecting the organic but modern feel of the house.
The home is arranged in four distinct “pods”: the center pod houses the living room, kitchen and other common areas; the north and south pods comprise the guest rooms and master suite, respectively. A separate air-conditioned garage can accommodate four cars and features a hangar door that opens into an awning as well as two elevated workspaces and a rooftop observation deck.
All four structures are roofed in metal with custom-designed awnings with irrigated trellises; the center pod features a two-story white oak living room cathedral ceiling; its back porch includes a cantilevered deck overlooking Lake Lucille with a covered patio and wood-burning fireplace. A glass-walled steel frame bridge with unobstructed views leads to the master suite. This one-of-a-kind home is surrounded by polo fields and equestrian facilities.
Developed in Norway, Kebony’s revolutionary technology is an environmentally friendly and patented process which modifies sustainably sourced softwoods by heating the wood with furfuryl alcohol – an agricultural by-product. By polymerising the wood’s cell wall, the softwoods permanently take on the attributes of tropical hardwood including high durability, hardness and dimensional stability. This unique process also provides Kebony with its characteristic appearance, which only grows more beautiful with time.
David Wersebe explained: “I built this house for me, so if it doesn’t sell, I might move into it. We’re trying to attract a $3 million buyer, and it’s dialed-in for the equestrian culture that’s big down here. The Kebony cladding worked extremely well for this project and as it weathers into its grey patina over time, it will blend beautifully into this environment.”