Archive for January 2011

Bored with your Job? Learn Permaculture and Work with the Earth

Bored with your Job? Learn Per­ma­cul­ture and Work with the Earth

Tak­ing a Per­ma­cul­ture Design Course is a pow­er­ful way to get up to speed on Per­ma­cul­ture. It is also an excit­ing expe­ri­ence that will be remem­bered for the rest of your life.

So what is Per­ma­cul­ture? Here’s a descrip­tion from Dave from Orcas Island, Wash­ing­ton. “If I really had to boil per­ma­cul­ture down to a sim­ple three word def­i­n­i­tion I would say “a design sys­tem”. In other words a process. Per­ma­cul­ture gives us a process through which we can take a piece of land. What is the goal of that process? It depends upon the goals of the per­son for whom you are designing.

How­ever, since per­ma­cul­ture has its feet deeply rooted in ethics, part of those goals will cer­tainly be the abil­ity of the envi­ron­ment to con­tinue to pro­vide eco­log­i­cal func­tions and the abil­ity of the envi­ron­ment to sup­port peo­ple. So you can use per­ma­cul­ture design prin­ci­ples to design a rural home­stead, a sub­ur­ban cul de sac, or an aban­doned urban lot. Depend­ing on your goals you can try to make any of these into a retreat cen­ter, a sin­gle fam­ily liv­ing space, or a drive-in the­ater. The per­ma­cul­ture design prin­ci­ples just help you fig­ure out ways to do it that are effi­cient, eco­nom­i­cal, and eco­log­i­cally harmonious.

…Per­ma­cul­ture encom­passes a lot of [dif­fer­ent] fields. Hope­fully, per­ma­cul­ture pro­vides us a way of unit­ing those fields so they begin to work together effi­ciently. I remem­ber hear­ing a story about a con­struc­tion site where the cab­i­net maker was walk­ing out of the house feel­ing sat­is­fied about the beau­ti­ful cab­i­nets he just installed. Mean­while, at the same time, the elec­tri­cian was walk­ing into the house with a hole saw to drill a hole in the cab­i­nets so he could run a con­duit for the light­ing. Sounds like an orches­tra with no con­duc­tor, right? While that exam­ple is from con­struc­tion, that type of thing is going on all the time when folks try to approach sus­tain­abil­ity from within only one dis­ci­pline. Hope­fully, the per­ma­cul­ture design process gives you an over­ar­ch­ing plan for how every­thing works together. Per­ma­cul­ture requires a bit of retrain­ing for your mind.”

And about the Per­ma­cul­ture Design Course, Gary Gre­gory of North­ern Cal­i­for­nia says “It was well worth the cost. I have endur­ing friend­ships from that time. There are a lot of things on this planet that have more value than money.”

The Per­ma­cul­ture Design Course is 72 hours long, gen­er­ally tak­ing from 8 to 14 days to com­plete. It fol­lows the syl­labus cre­ated by Bill Mol­li­son and uses his book The Per­ma­cul­ture Design Man­ual as the course text. A cer­tifi­cate of com­ple­tion is given at the end of the course. This cer­tifi­cate allows the grad­u­ate to use the word Per­ma­cul­ture in adver­tis­ing, teach Per­ma­cul­ture and also be a Per­ma­cul­ture Design Consultant.

Wouldn’t you rather be play­ing in the moist sweet earth?