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  • Simon and Ellery

5 Reasons To Take A Permaculture Design Course

"The healing of the land and the purification of the human spirit is the same process"

- Masanobu Fukuoka


Why the heck would you want to take a Permaculture Design Course?

There are so many reasons but I’m going to give you my Top 5

Food Security.

Food security, food security, food security. Should I say it one more time?


Good food ain't cheap and cheap food ain't good. If you went to the grocery store about a year ago, you probably saw some pretty scary things. Empty shelves, limits on frozen food, canned goods, bags of flour, meat. I can't tell you how many times I've raised concerns to other folks about this topic,and you know what I almost always heard back? "Oh don't worry. That wont happen in your lifetime". *insert eye roll here*

Designing your property with growing food in mind is going to be extremely beneficial for your future and how you feed yourself, your family, and even your community. A PDC will give you the tools and the inspiration to produce abundance for yourself, your community, and your land.

Creating New Income Streams

Given the fragile nature of not just our food systems, but most systems that are currently in place, permaculturely designed properties are the perfect solution. This isn't some course that is just going to teach you about how to grow a productive garden. Permaculture design encompasses building design, waste management systems, water systems, power sources. You could literally design a whole city using what you learn from a PDC.

Be ahead of the game and get yourself certified because this is bound to be something most folks are going to not only want to, but need to incorporate into their lives.

If you're not into designing for other people, there are so many possibilities for income streams off of your own permaculture property.

Selling fruit/veg/eggs/meat

Selling seeds

Fresh cut flowers

Medicinal herbs

Start a native plant nursery


A you-pick garden

Locally grown catered meals



Fire wood

An oasis that Instagram influencers will flock to get that perfect shot.

I could go on forever about all of the awesome things that could earn you some extra cash from your permaculturally designed space but I'll stop now and move on to my third point.

The Revolution Has Begun

Permaculture is changing the world already. If you're not familiar with some of the awesome things folks are up these days, I can't say I'm surprised. We almost never hear about the most awesome things that are going on (especially these days). Basically we're told about mass shootings, nuclear melt downs, extreme weather, killer hornets, daily death tolls, and who won the Superbowl. The silver lining of the fear stew is that we're more likely do try and do something to get out of that crock pot!

Here are a few projects that have been going on that I highly encourage you to look into.

The Greening The Desert Project

Over the past 10 years, Greening The Desert demonstration site and education centre, located between the villages of Al Jawfa and Al Jawasreh in the Jordan River Valley, has exemplified the imperative impact of a permaculture integrated approach in an arid climate. Incorporating organic agricultural production, water and waste management, soil amelioration, renewable energies, environmental sustainability and ecosystem diversity, it provides a unique model for self-sustainable farming.

Visit for more info, videos, and articles

Willie Smits and the Masarang Foundation

Dr. Willie Smits (1957) is a forestry engineer, microbiologist, conservationist, animal activist and social entrepreneur. He lives in Tomohon (North Sulawesi) and is an Indonesian citizen. For over thirty years Smits has been working for the conservation of endangered primate species such as the orangutan. During this time he has expanded into related areas including sustainable agriculture, reforestation and forest monitoring.

In recent years Willie has been and is working on a project that can change the world. On east Kalimantan as Chief Science Officer for Arsari Enviro Industri Willie is working on the reforestation of more than 500000 hectares of degraded forest.

Willie already has proven that restoring a rain forest is possible, even under the worst conditions. At Sambodja Lestari in ca 8 years Willie has transformed the area into a thriving tropical forest, coming from 2000 hectares of alang alang grassland desert!

Visit to listen to his amazing TED Talk

Paani Foundation

For decades, drought has ravaged thousands of villages in Maharashtra, leading to thirst, hunger, debt, forced migration and withered crops. After travelling through hundreds of villages, and speaking with veterans in the field, we discovered that this crisis is largely man-made. It is a result of mismanagement of water and natural resources, exacerbated by the uncertainties caused by climate change.

The scientific solutions to eradicating this crisis can be found in methods of water conservation, water management and environment restoration. These are well-known solutions, propagated by experts for years.

However, the primary barrier to implementing these on scale lies in deep-rooted social fractures. Divides of caste, religion, political affiliations and gender have prevented communities from owning this issue and finding purpose in solving it together.

At Paani Foundation, we believe in the transformative power of collection action. We are convinced that only a broad-based people’s movement that brings the village community together, can face this crisis. Our mission is to create a drought-free and prosperous Maharashtra, by fostering social unity and providing scale to proven solutions and technologies.

Visit to see what this community inniative is accomplishing.

I am always awed when I see some of the absolutely mind blowing things people are doing out there using Permaculture techniques. One of the coolest things about using this design technique is that it lasts. Which brings me to my next point.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

When we think of growing our own food, landscaping, and planting flowers, most of us get a little scared about the back breaking work that we know we'll have to put into keeping our systems productive. When designing these systems with permaculture in mind, there is an initial output of effort, yes. But as the years go on, the work becomes less and less. These are permanent systems that you're putting in that get better with age; just like you ;)!

Close your eyes and picture it. Perennial food systems that only need to be harvested and occasionally maintained. Water retention systems that keep your soil perfectly moist so that you only ever have to water if there is a serious drought; and even then, you'll probably be ok. Chickens, ducks or pigs who till the soil for you, fertilise your gardens, and eat all of the pests. A house that cools itself in the hot summer and takes minimal effort to heat in the winter. This utopian dream of easy living isn't out of your reach! PDC's will teach you all about how to grow old with ease and abundance.


My last point, to me, is the most important one by far.

Permaculture Design Courses teach you exactly how much impact a single person can have and exactly how interconnected to nature we are. This is extremely empowering. This is something that is slowly being taken away from us and we are forgetting how powerful we really are. Practising permaculture is the most radical and world changing thing we can do as individuals. It provides all of our basic needs, while connecting us to our communities, or innate creativity, and the planet we live on. Permaculture is for everyone. No matter how big or how small your land, no matter how much or how little experience with growing and designing you have, and no matter where you are from, you can practice permaculture and therefore, change the world.


Interested in taking a Permaculture Design Course? Here are some links to PDCs run by folks we trust.

Geoff Lawton PDC

Use code SIMON100 for $100 off of your enrolment fee.

*online course for Permaculture Design Certification

Permaculture Design Course and Appropriate Technology Course Videos

All videos from Paul Wheatons PDC and ATC courses (177 hours)

*you will not receive certification from this option

Permaculture Technology Jamboree

A hands-on in person event in Montana for folks who want to gain skills centred in permaculture homesteading.

-collaboration, experimentation and innovation to move permaculture technology forward

-experiences for people new to permaculture technology

-building homesteading skills

*using the links to purchase these items helps us out a lot.

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