Permaculture Design Certificate
Within this course we explore the elements fundamental to the design of a permaculture systems and how this is expressed within different types of systems. The resources within the course are based around a project that involves development of a site utilising permaculture design methodology. This may be a farm, backyard, community area, school, or similar space.
This course also acts as a gateway between permaculture design methodology and developing a new type of regenerative business. This is achieved by exploring how best to offer a service through the system you are designing. Both aspects are fully explored and applied within design tasks imbedded throughout the course. By the end of the course you will have developed a detailed report for developing your site and delivering your service.
Within the course there are 6 main modules that explore different aspects of understanding permaculture design and applying it to your project. The following outlines the focus of each module:
Benefits of a PDC
Practical Knowledge: Within the PDC we cover a wide range of techniques used for growing nutrient-dense food, including: aquaponics, biodynamics, biointensive, natural farming, organics, grazing systems, plant propagation (and more). You can directly apply the knowledge from the course to the develop of a wide array of food producing systems for creating a year around abundance of nutrient dense and organic food.
Systems-thinking and regenerative design: Within the course we guide you through a process of identifying all the variables that will impact your decision-making process for the design of a regenerative system. We provide the background philosophy and guidance for developing principles to achieve regenerative outcomes within that system and how to select suitable plants and animals for your site and arrange those elements in time and space in ways that replicate their function within natural systems and achieve regenerative outcomes for improving soil health and nutrient density of food.
Detailed design report: The whole course is integrated into the various stages of creating a comprehensive design report for your site. This insures the content covered in the course is directly applicable ti the design of your site and on completion of the course you have explored and developed a detailed strategy to achieve the outcomes you desire.
Community: Enthronement into the course gives you lifetime access to our Facebook Mastermind Group for building connection with other permaculture practitioners from around the country. Part of the advantage of completing a long-form course like this is the opportunity to learn from each other. From this collaboration many useful techniques can be shared in applying permaculture design and it also provides a platform to explore topics and share knowledge.
Note: masterclass bonus not currently available
Introduction to Course
- Permaculture Introduction: This topic explores the background of permaculture, its founders and the core philosophy that underpins this design approach to creating regenerative systems.
- Course Navigation: This topic explains the navigation of the online Moodle platform that acts as the learning platform and the organisation of content within the course.
- Design Task: Explains the integration of the final design task throughout modules explored within the course, the intention of the design task and requirements within the final submission to obtain your Permaculture Design Certificate.
Module One: Regenerative Design.
- Rhythms of nature: An investigation into the motion of Earth and other influential planets that influence the rhythms of climate and weather and life on Earth.
- Patterns in nature: Exploring the form and function of patterns expressed within natural systems and some of the underlying concepts in how they develop.
- Designing with patterns: The recreation of natural patterns within designed systems aligned to producing natural functions and healthy outcomes.
Principles of Design
- Guidance from principles: What are principles and how they can be used to create a guidance framework for navigating life’s choices and reflecting upon outcomes.
- Permaculture principles: Exploring the principles formulated by David Holmgren that underpin functional permaculture design.
- Developing principles: Guidance for reflecting upon your own core values and identifying principles to guide your life, create a framework for group dynamics and guiding the design of systems.
- Biotic and Abiotic Factors: Exploring how an ecosystem is composed of living biological elements and non-living abiotic elements and how the complex interactions of these elements create stability and highly evolved species adapted to their respective niches.
- Recycling Matter: Exploring how matter is recycled between these Earth's spheres and how the biosphere moderates these cycles to create stability in ways that benefit life.
- Energy flow: Exploring how energy flows through tropic cascades through ecosystem food webs and how the complexity of those food webs creates energy transfer efficiencies that stabilise those ecosystems.
- Diversity and interconnection: Explores how the interplay between an appropriate diversity of plants and animals suited to a system build stability.
- Time and Space: Investigates patterns in time and space within a system and how they can be harnessed to create synergy.
- Synchronicity and resilience: How good design leads to synchronicity of elements and regenerative outcomes.
Module Two: Context is Everything.
The Creative Agent
- Finding your Strengths: Using Clifton Strengths Finder to identify key personality strengths.
- Core Personality Traits: Exploring Myers-Briggs framework for identifying personality traits.
- Identifying Your Mission and Values: Crafting a life of purpose guided by a clear vision that promote self-actualization through a state congruence.
- The environment: Identifying characteristics of the landscape, position of your system, supporting infrastructure, current demand and available support structure.
- The culture: Identifying local cultural and community narratives and values that will influence the design of your system.
- Where to play: Identifying potential niches created through an alignment of personal strengths and the environmental analysis for development of systems.
Know Your End User
- Researching Your End User: Exploring demographic characteristics of key target market.
- Creating a Value Proposition Canvas: Using this canvas to identify key attributes of target end user.
- Adding Value: How to exceed expectations of end users and create value adding services.
Module Three: Landscape Dynamics.
- Global Weather Systems: Explores what global forces drive our climate and create seasonal effects in different areas of the world.
- Local Factors: Explores how the interplay of proximity to oceans, altitude, longitude, prevailing weather systems and other factors influence the specific conditions experienced in a region.
- Micro-climates: How orientation to the sun, shelter, topography and living and build structures influence the climate experienced at a site.
Working with Topography
- Mapping: Investigates how to read and create topographical maps.
- Aspect: Explores the interplay between slope and light and how it impacts production.
- Shelter: Investigates how to utilise topography to create sheltered micro-climates.
Working with Water:
- Filtration: Investigated how nutrients from farming systems dissolve into water and pollute water ways and methods to remove these nutrients to minimise this harm.
- Storage: Explores techniques used to capture, store and spread soil within the landscape to support soil building processes and retain nutrients within a system.
- Infiltration: Explores the dynamics of how water moves through a landscape and how landscape management practices influence this.
- Physical Properties: Investigates the different characteristics of mineral elements found in soil and how to work with different soil profiles to create healthy and productive farming systems.
- Chemical Properties: Explores cation exchange capacity of soil, and essential soil minerals and nutrients for producing nutrient dense plants.
- Biological Properties: Delves into the roles of different organisms within the soil, how their function contributes to soil building processes and how we can enhance these processes through farm management.
- Wind: Explores how to translates the impact of wind at your site onto your sector map.
- Light: Explores identifying sun angles at different times of the year and mapping it.
- Privacy: Investigates how to identify different types of privacy/noise/sight issues that impact your site.
- Frosts: Identifies where on your property id frost like;y to settle and have the biggest impact.
- Soil Types: Investigates different soil types on your property and the impact they will have.
Module Four: Exploring Possibilities.
Zone 0: Healthy Homes
- Aquaponics: Investigates the design of aquaponics systems that combining aquaculture systems (raising aquatic species) with hydroponic systems (for raising terrestrial plants) within symbiotic and self-sustaining systems.
- Natural Materials: Investigates options using locally sourced appropriate materials to create structures that blend in with their landscape.
- Passive Solar Design: Investigates the science and application of creating warm and light filled homes, with good air circulation.
Zone 1: The Annual Garden
- Biointensive farming: How to develop organic agricultural system that focuses on achieving maximum yields from a minimum area of land, while simultaneously increasing biodiversity and sustaining the fertility of the soil.
- Improving soil fertility: Techniques to manage fertility, using compost, foliar sprays and probiotic fertilisers.
- Managing pests and weeds: Understanding the characteristics of weeds and methods of control. Utilising biological controls, organic sprays, companion planting and rotation of plants.
Zone 2: The Perennial Orchard
- Biodynamic farming: Explores the practices of biodynamic agriculture developed by Rudolf Steiner, that combine organic farming practices with an esoteric connection to the energies of nature.
- Propagation: Techniques used for propagation of your own perennial plants and selecting for desired genetic traits.
- Plant guilds: Creating symbiotic associations of plants focused on supporting health of target productive species or creating a range of species that produce at similar times.
- Incorporating animals: Ways to incorporate some common types of animals and benefit from some of the beneficial functions to create supplementary yields and improve the health of orchard plants.
Zone 3: Holistic Grazing
- Grazer Physiology: Explores the origin and physiology of common pastoral herbivores and requirements from a habitat to express their natural behaviours.
- Pasture Management: The development of mixed forage pastures, the incorporation of tree crops and management of grazers in time and space.
- Habitat design: Explore potential design solution to provide optimal health for both grazers, soil and surrounding natural environments.
Module Five: Using Support Structures.
- Attachment theory: Explores some of the underlying psychology behind how we pre-disposed to relate to others and strategies to form secure attachments with healthy boundaries.
- Finding your Tribe: Describes the evolutionary disposition we have to form secure attachment with small group of trusted people from which we derive a sense of connection, fulfil our esteem needs
- Building Community: Explores some of the strategies around forming intentional communities around a shared purpose and navigate some of the challenges to doing this.
- Appropriate Technology: Investigates a range of low tech and durable solutions to enhance productivity on the farm.
- Removing Redundancy: Explores new advances in how technology can be utilised to cut through laborious tasks and improve productivity.
- Multiplying Value Output: Looking at how our creative output can be aligned with technology to multiple productivity.
- Understanding Capitalism: Explores the mechanism underpinning capitalism which support our economy.
- Creating a Budget: Outlines practical advice on how to manage cash flow to ensure income generation results in a positive cash flow.
- Investing: Introduces approaches to invest and grow financial assets to leverage wealth generation.
This design project involves the following components that are embedded as design tasks within the course. These have been set up in the Moodle site as individual assignments so that you get feedback throughout the course and also as a final submission for obtaining your Permaculture Design Certificate.
- Introduction: Here you introduce the context of your design project, perform a self-analysis of your own strengths and personality traits and identify the needs of the end-user.
- Background: This section summarises your exploration of the intention of permaculture design and translates that into a working interpretation that can guide your design.
- Site Analysis: Involves assessing the dynamics relevant to the context of your design that may include a description of the soil, topography, climate and previous land uses.
- Base Maps: Before starting the design of your system it pays to capture good base maps that act as a template to explore different design possibilities. These base maps should reflect existing features on the site, contour, access, different zones of production and wet areas.
- Sector Analysis: This map expresses the energies that impact upon your site, showing the direction and angle of sun, direction of wind, impact of noise, good views etc. These factors will impact the design of your site.
- Concept Sketches: Using a simplified base map, come up with a number of different design possibilities – exploring different ways production systems within different zones can interact to recycle resources and nutrients and make best use of on-site resources and sources of fertility.
- Final Plan: This is a working plan for the development of your system. It reflects the best way the ideas explored within your concept sketches can interact to best effect to create a balanced and regenerative system.
- Description: Here you capture how you have attempted to apply your interpretation of permaculture to the design of your system and explain the different elements of the system you have created.
- Implementation: Lastly, you explain how you can make best use of successional changes in the development of your system, manage finances and other resources and slowly develop your system over time. Part of this process is your method for capturing observations of changes within the system - so that you can make suitable adjustments to your design.
- PDC Submission: The last submission is one combined PDF file (good copy) of all the previous tasks as one complete report. The final submission should reflect the evolution of thought obtained from progress through the course and may involve some modification from earlier submissions.
For further details and payment plan options please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
2020 Permaculture Design Certificate
Agrifutures flagship Permaculture Design Certificate Course
Embark on a life-changing educational experience - where upon completion - the design possibilities of landscapes will come to life and you will become a force for regenerative change.
And create a tasty food producing system while you are at it :)