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2017 Maine Permaculture Design Course - (5 Weekends, Apr-Aug, Freeport)

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Hosted By
Lisa F. and Jesse W.
[Please note, the "price" above is the deposit - not the full course fee]

Be part of creating a better future.

A one-weekend-per-month format for the internationally-recognized full Permaculture Design Certificate Course, running April through August 2017. Typically sells out.

Co-hosted by The Resilience Hub and by Maine Coast Waldorf School (

2017 MAINE LOCATION: This year we will be hosted on the 80-acre campus of Maine Coast Waldorf School in Freeport Maine. The school is in the middle of developing a multi-year Agricultural Arts, permaculture and biodynamics program.


Please note that there will also be a Farm-Scale Permaculture Design Course in central Maine this year (starting in the summer, finishing winter 2017-18) for anyone involved in some sort of commercial production landscape (annual, perennial, livestock, forestry, mycology, etc.) Details to be published soon!


This course is recommended for home-owners and renters, farmers and gardeners, landscape professionals, planners, architects, engineers, tradespeople, community activists and anyone interested in charting a new course for themselves and their communities. This course can be considered vocational training that leads to a change in how you make a living in the world. Additional proficiency testing can be provided in order to meet vocational training funding programs if required.

Important - This course includes hands-on DESIGN practice as well as hands-on SKILLS practice (i.e. implementation techniques) as part of the learning approach. This course takes the "design" part of "permaculture design course" very seriously and will use a robust and flexible design process as a touchstone theme throughout the curriculum.

Expected Learning Outcomes:

Gain a thorough understanding of permaculture origins, ethics, principles and design methodologies.

Enhance your ability to build soil, capture water, reduce energy consumption, generate energy, grow and store food, read the landscape and create edible perennial ecosystems.

Become a resource for your family and neighbourhood, building resilience at the personal, household, enterprise and community levels.

Become connected to a vibrant professional and grassroots permaculture community.

Be able to approach any property and apply a permaculture design methodology and set of applied techniques to achieve increased resilience and true sustainability.

Learn how to start transforming even challenging properties into healthy, high-yielding systems of abundance that require little to no fossil fuels.

Change the way you view the challenges and gifts around you.

Be ready to create a livelihood or gain employment for yourself in permaculture or a related field.

Read Testimonials from Recent PDC Participants (

Permaculture Design Certificate Course Details

LOCATION: Maine Coast Waldorf School, Freeport Maine (15 min north of Portland, 2.25 hours north of Boston, 1.5h south of Bangor)

SCHEDULE: This course will be held over the course of 5 weekends, April through August 2017. Course dates (mark your calendar now) in 2017 will be:

April 22/23 - June 3/4 - July 14/15/16 - August 4/5/6 - August 25/26/27

This works well for those who cannot take extensive time off from work or home responsibilities. Class time generally runs 9am to 5pm + films/speakers during the evenings of each weekend. Some rustic camping available on-site at no extra charge. Local lodging recommendations and/or homestays can be arranged with local permaculture group members.

COST: $1400 ($1300 early registration) for 13 full days of direct learning contact time (not including homework and/or self-study). No extra charges for camping or meals. Payment plans can be arranged.

Course fee includes full course materials and certification, coffee, tea + am/pm snacks and refreshments, handouts, over 30 gigabytes of course reference materials (digital format), access to the 200+ volume physical permaculture library, field trips, guest instructors. There is a small number of on-site, rustic campsites but this is primarily a "commuter course." We are happy to help organize homestays or recommendations for lodging if needed. One evening meal per weekend is provided; lunches are potluck. Full info packet sent to all registrations several weeks before start of course with details on camping/lodging options, what to bring, etc.


1. RSVP and pay your $250 deposit on this page (or via our PayPal link: )

2. Provide your contact details here to receive more class information:


• Early registration discount if you pay in full by February 28th ($100 off).

• Hour Exchange ( (and reciprocal time bank) members can use up to 10 hours toward $200 off tuition (not including the deposit).

• For every enrolled student that you refer, receive $50 referral discount off your own tuition for this course.

• If two adults from the same household register for the course, there is a 10% family discount for both.

• Consider becoming a Community-Supported-Permaculturist by fund raising a portion of your course fee. Here is a sample fund raising letter ( that you can modify to suit your needs. Host a movie night and pass the hat. Use a GoFundMe page. Engage the support of your community and let them know how your education will allow you to "give back" later.

• Many employers have historically reimbursed their employees for some or all of this course fee. Speak to your employer if applicable.

• MOFGA Journeypersons may be eligible to use some of their education funds toward this course.

• Some vocational training funding programs.

• Barter. We have the ability to do a limited amount of barter directly with food producers for eggs, dairy, CSA shares (or partial), freezer animal shares (beef, pig, lamb, poultry, etc.). If you are a food producer and would like to barter for part of your course fee, please contact the meetup organizer.

• We are working with a donor to offer discounts to persons of color and First Nations people. Inquire with the meetup organizer.

• There is one work-study position available for this course. The work study student pays a total course fee of $350, helps with setup and breakdown of each class day, helps organize the setup and breakdown of meal times and the coffee/tea station and a few other miscellaneous tasks (other students sign up to help at each meal time as well so the work study person isn't "doing all the work."). Requires independent transportation and the ability to reliably arrive to class about 1h early each day and stay about 1h extra at the end of the weekend. WORK STUDY POSITION HAS ALREADY BEEN FILLED AT THIS TIME.

Class Size is limited. This course typically sells out.

MORE ABOUT THE COURSE: This course consists of the traditional 72-hour PDC course + approx 40 additional hours (plus homework / self-directed study) to ensure we cover hands-on activities, regional examples and timely developments. You will participate in this course through a combination of lecture, hands-on exercises, guest speakers, field trips, homework, video, discussion and a group student design project. There will be pre-work before the course (a couple of articles and a couple of online videos) and 2-3 hours of "homework" between course weekends. Students must attend all sessions and complete the group design project in order to receive their certificates of completion. Attendance policy (

A course information packet will be sent to you a month before the course beings.

Pedagogical Note:

The Resilience Hub runs participatory learning events. Our instructors view themselves as conveners and facilitators of your learning experience, one in which the wisdom of all participants is valued. We believe, based on our experience, that the "social permaculture" of HOW we learn is just as important as WHAT we learn.

Topics Include (but not limited to...)

Permaculture Background & Context

Permaculture Ethics & Principles

Patterns in Nature / Pattern Literacy

Reading the Landscape

Intro to Site Assessment

Living Soils & Soil Health

Sheet Mulching Techniques

Building Your Permaculture Toolkit

"Synergistic Garden" & Fukuoka Methods

Permaculture Design Analysis Methods

Viewing a Property Through a Permaculture Lens

Permaculture Plants for the Northeast

Polycultures, Guilds and Forest Gardening

Keyline Design, Chisel-Plowing and Swales

Coppice Agroforestry

Animals in the Landscape

Water in the Landscape

Biodynamics & Permaculture

Renewable Energy for Home & Farm

Retrofitting Buildings for Resilience

Affordable Green Building/Examples

Retrofitting Existing Neighborhoods

Permaculture & Community "Invisible Structures"

Social & Economic Permaculture

"Broad-acre" Permaculture Opportunities for Farms

Becoming Permaculture Resources in Your Community

Design Methodologies and Conventions

Mycelial Permaculture Connections to the World

Design Practicum + Presentations

Carrying Permaculture Forward

Lisa Fernandes ( and Jesse Watson will be the lead facilitators of this course.

Past contributors have included Mark Fulford, Lisa DePiano, Mark Krawczyk, Kiarna Boyd and many others joining along the way to provide a unique learning experience tailored to our region. The exact lineup of guest speakers will be confirmed at the start of class.
The Resilience Hub & Portland Maine Permaculture
Maine Coast Waldorf School
57 Desert Road · Freeport, ME