Guide to Permaculture Practice , Principles & Courses

Permaculture is a system of agricultural and social design principles centred around creating a sustainable and self-sufficient habitat for yourself. Essentially, Permaculture means to create a Permanent Culture by applying the principles and ethics of sustainable living and living mindfully, utilising, conserving and recycling local sources of water, fuel, food, clothing, and building supplies.

In 1929 Joseph Russell Smith wrote about his knowledge he had acquired while experimenting with fruit and nut trees as crops for human food as well as animal feed. He discovered the world to be an inter-related whole where he mixed systems of trees with plants growing underneath to create one interconnected ecosystem.

Permaculture will be able to teach you how to create a self-sustainable ecosystem by using the least amount of space, with the least amount of effort while still cooperating with nature. You will learn how to take all the knowledge you have acquired about climates, physics, ecosystems, and energy and implement it into your everyday life.

Being able to assess the suns angles throughout different seasons, learning where your predominant wind comes from and where your property would be most susceptible to floods and security risks, are just some of the aspects Permaculture will teach you to use. Analysing and planning your space is vital to ensure that everything you want to plant has a purpose in your garden and will benefit the rest of your system in years to come. Planning before you start executing will also help you to optimise your grow by allowing you to focus on the plant produce you use the most frequently from your garden, enabling you to save time and effort.

Some of the topics that an excellent permaculture course and instructor should teach you are; composting, mulching, green and liquid manures, the benefits of crop rotation, how to control pests and disease through healthy soil & natural remedies, when and where to plant, worm farms and how to make your own liquid fertilisers and how to incorporate chickens and other wildlife into your ecosystem.

Whether you are a seasoned gardener or know absolutely nothing about how to design a self-sustainable garden, you can be guaranteed to walk away from the course with a whole new outlook, as well as, inspiration to get you started on your journey of applying the permaculture principles and ethics into your own space.

Permaculture is a fantastic way of bringing people together from all walks of life. It is an incredibly powerful concept to teach children as they will learn many tips and tricks that they will remember for the rest of their lives. Teaching Permaculture to young children empowers them to want to grow their food and maintain a healthy lifestyle from a young age. Studies have shown that kids who are growing produce, eat their vegetables. This skill is essential, especially in a world full of fast food that has very little nutritional value. That is why one of the most powerful lessons we can teach children today is to grow their food.

However, it is not only important for children to learn this vital lesson. There is also so much that Mother Nature can teach us, as adults, about survival and how connected we are to this planet; we need to learn how to listen. Permaculture teaches us as adults how to slow down in this fast-paced world we live in and to observe and assess our surroundings.
Whether you have a big piece of land to work with or a small garden, you will learn how to make that space the most productive and cost-efficient area imaginable. You will discover tools that will help ensure your property can withstand the effects of climate change, which is a growing concern, and assist you to creatively adapt and respond to change so that you can optimise your land and, in turn, benefit from it for the rest of your life.

Nonetheless, Permaculture is not limited in the lessons it provides and does not only teach us how and what to plant. You will learn how to create building materials and permanent structures. You will learn how to use mother nature to filter water, that would typically go down our drains and be gone forever. You will learn how to create your own completely organic fertilisers from waste products. You will learn how to develop natural pesticides and insecticides, as well as how to work with mother nature to allow her to develop all-natural solutions for you. These natural solutions include generating electricity to power your house, heat your water or to move captured water from one place to another.

Furthermore, there are incredible life skills that you will learn and be able to adapt to your everyday life, whether you’re inside or outside your home. These skills include; how to open-heartedly accept feedback without making us question our competence, how to live in the moment and appreciate the small things in life, how to relax and restore energy into our lives, how to empower us by being accountable and how to live in harmony with each other by integrating everyone into our community to truly value diversity.

Be warned; once you have opened your mind to the incredible world of Permaculture, you will never look at anything the same again.
Previous article What is Aquaponics? Sustainable Food, Profitable Growing Systems