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$$ - Permaculture Design Course- Spring 2013

The San Diego Sustainable Living Institute has scheduled a Spring 2013 Permaculture Design Course.

April 6-7, 13-14  May 4-5, 11-12  June 1-2, 8-9

Full 12 Day Certificate Course

Class Meets Throughout San Diego County

To register or for more information please go to SDSLI's page

Learn how Permaculture Design can meet and exceed human needs by transforming human gardens and communities into fully functioning ecosystems. Receive hands-on experience on how to apply the principles of ecological design in your own home, farm, neighborhood, and city. Permaculture is an integrated ecological design system for creating sustainable human settlements. Far more than a set of gardening tips and techniques, Permaculture is about understanding and designing the connections between people, the earth, plants, energy, climate, water, transportation, shelter, animals, economics and much more.

This course is for:Home owners, renters, gardeners, farmers, ranchers, landscapers, architects, builders, developers, civic planners, educators, environmentalists, students … everyone who wishes to learn how to live sustainably and apply the principles of holistic design to their respective fields.

Students digging a swale


Course topics:

  • Permaculture ethics
  • Permaculture design principles
  • Understanding natural patterns
  • Creating healthy soil
  • Plant selection, plant guilds & food forests
  • Site analysis & design
  • Mapping
  • Climate and microclimates
  • Water harvesting
  • Energy
  • Natural building
  • Bioregional theory
  • Local food systems & community land access
  • Co-housing, eco-villages & City Repair
  • Design for peak oil & ecological collapse
  • Ecological economics & community currencies

About the course: This 72 hour curriculum will cover Bill Mollison’s PERMACULTURE DESIGNERS MANUAL plus more recent material. The course consists of six (6) two (2)-day weekends held throughout San Diego County. The spread out weekend format is to accommodate local residents schedules to participate in this valuable learning experience taught by regional experts in Permaculture & Sustainability. Course experience will include classroom instruction, field trips, hands-on activities, required & suggested readings & completion of a permaculture design project. Upon successful completion of the course, the student will receive Permaculture Design Certification.


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  • Jacqueline K.

    Hi Josh, would we required to attend/come up with projects to be certified? I'm trying to figure out if I need to account for extra time commitment. Also, where are the locations (in terms of locale). Thank you! Jackie

    April 1, 2013

    • Josh R.

      Jackie, there is a design project required and this is done as a group. The class will break up into about 4 projects ranging from backyard scale, community, business, or large farm or development. The choice is yours. How much time you devote to it is really up to you and your group and you all decide to split up some of the work. I would say be prepared to spend at least 8-10 hours over the 3 months working on the project. In terms of locations: 1st weekend at the University of San Diego (USD). 2nd weekend in Potrero (camping optional). 3rd weekend at Blue Sky Ranch in Lakeside (camping optional). 4th weekend in central San Diego on field trips. 5th weekend at Sky Mountain Institute near Escondido. The last weekend TBD. As you can see we are spending time throughout much of the county.

      April 2, 2013

    • Jacqueline K.

      Thanks, Josh. I won't be able to join this time round, but I'm looking forward to the next course you teach!

      April 5, 2013

  • Michelle P.

    Hi, I work for San Diego farmers' markets and unfortunately have to work Sundays. I've been waiting for an opportunity to complete a permaculture design course, so I was wondering if you knew of any alternatives I could work through? :) Thanks

    April 4, 2013

    • Josh R.

      Michelle, unfortunately the course that we currently teach is on weekends and is offered in the spring and fall each year. We have found that to be the most accommodating for the most people. The only other local PDC is offered occasionally by Jane Higginson and I think there will be later this summer. She is on this meetup group and can be contacted directly to find out the details of that course. The last one she offered was a 2 week intensive and I am not sure if Sundays were included or not. If none of these options work, I have a friend that teaches an online PDC through Oregon State University and info can be found here: http://www.beaverstat...­ I think you will find that most physical courses will include Sundays. Some will allow makeup sessions to be coordinated. We allow for people that miss a day to come to the next one, but again it most likely be on another Sunday. Let me know if you have any other questions

      April 4, 2013

  • Josh R.


    Thanks for the inquiry. I will be the lead facilitator and teacher with many great guest instructors including Colin Richards, Alden Hough, Brook Sarson, Yael Zaidman, Christopher Marciello, and many more. Bios can be found at the bottom of this page:

    The fee for the course is $650 if you sign up early.

    February 4, 2013

  • heidi_bentz

    Is there a cost associated with this course, and who are the instructors, please. :) Thanks!

    February 4, 2013

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