With contemporary designers increasingly focusing on environmental considerations, design historians have begun the search for precedents that might reconstruct design history in sustainable terms. An essential step in this reconstruction will be further consideration of design as an extended ecological practice or process, rather than the previously narrow focus on the production, consumption and mediation of discrete, finished artefacts. This article examines design as an ecological practice through a close analysis of American designer Russel Wright's home, studio, and woodland garden, Manitoga. Integrating architecture, interior, and landscape design into an environmental gesamtkunstwerk, Manitoga is a largely forgotten proto-ecological design project of the 1950s. However, Manitoga is more than simply a historical site, and is reconsidered here as a project that combines Wright's 'creative living' ideals and design processes, one that remains provocative over fifty years later.