Tag: PDC

Permaculture Course Update

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As we move closer to the start of our Whatcom Hands On Permaculture Design Course, We wanted to share an update of how things are progressing. At this point the course is half full, with a half a dozen or so interested and thinking about it.

We would like to offer an incentive for people to sign up.

  • We are extending the early bird price of $1600 till May 1st, $200 off the regular price
  • Sign up a friend and get $100 off of your tuition.
  • Sign up as a couple and get a $200 discount

We are really looking forward to getting into the nuts and bolts of the class schedule. If we have not reached minimum enrollment by May 5th, we will strategically pivot to a slightly different format.  We would still continue to offer some of the course content, but as stand-alone workshops conducted throughout the Spring and Summer. 

Upcoming Events

Here are a few upcoming events if you are interested in meeting us or visiting a site prior to the course.  These are also great opportunities to meet other people in our area interested in Permaculture.  They are also a great chance to invite your friends who may be exploring some of these ideas ; )

Saturday, April 23rd-  9 – 2pm Whatcom Farm Expo Exhibition Free! Put on by the Whatcom Conservation District. Come visit us at this trade convention for our local Agricultural Community.  More information at their Website, Eventbrite, and Facebook event, pages.

Friday, April 29 –  4 – 6pm Permaculture Meet-up at Inspiration Farm: Free! Come meet and chat with our local Permaculture Community.  We can share ideas, plants, books or tools. 

Sunday, May 1st – 2 – 5pm  International Permaculture DayFree! We are hosting a Plant sale/swap as well as a site tour.  Bring plants to share or a little bit of cash for purchasing and join us.

Saturday, May 14 – 10 – 4pm Food Forest & Permaculture Guild Plants $40 Workshop at Inspiration Farm.

Permaculture course weekends you can attend separately!

We will be offering certain modules of the course as a stand-alone workshops for people who are interested in specific topics but may not be able to commit to an entire course.  The cost will be $200 per weekend.  Please share these opportunities with anybody you know who may be interested.  Thanks. 

Weekend #1  May 21st and 22nd $200

The first weekend will cover the Foundations of Permaculture overview and logistics of the whole course. This will be an introduction to the foundations of permaculture. If you decide you are interested in taking the whole course you may roll this fee into the total cost of the course.

The first two information packed days we will cover permaculture defined; observation skills; ethics and the basis of ecological design; permaculture principles. We will include a comprehensive site tour with observation skill exercises while looking at indicators of sustainability, and how to use them. We will address whole systems thinking and how to look at fast track succession as it applies to design strategies.


Weekend #2  June 4th and 5th $200

The second weekend we will look at Designing within a Pattern Literacy Context. We will also be joined by the renowned permaculture designer and practitioner Doug Bullock. As we look at topography, geology, climate and microclimates Designing from patterns to details using natural patterns as a design tool. Looking at the overview of the permaculture design process and methods of design using the Zone and Sector System.

Day two we will go into the Roles of Trees and Plants. How do these elements relate to developing a stable system. Polyculture plants and their many functions. Methods for propagation, care and the yields they offer back to the system.  Strategic design of plant communities for the orchard food forest system including; hedgerows, windbreaks, shelter belts and the home garden.


Weekend #3  June 18th and 19th $200

This third weekend will focus on  Soil and Water. On Saturday, we will explore the complex, living, breathing edge between the earth and the sky.  By exploring the dynamic Soil Food Web, we will learn about both the geological and ecological relationships which best facilitate plant growth.  Sunday will explore Water Systems and provide a practical and accessible approach to this most critical infrastructure.  We will look at Residential Irrigation systems that connect the garden to the home.  We will also explore Domestic Plumbing systems such as the kitchen sink, toilet and grey water irrigation.  We’ll learn how to troubleshoot simple problems that homeowners and renters may encounter in everyday life.


Weekend #4  July 9th and 10th $200

This Fourth weekend will focus on  Social Relations and Practical Tools. We will also be joined by the renowned permaculture designer Penny Livingston.  On Saturday we will explore awesome Community Projects happening within the scope of Permaculture Design.  We will also investigate social relationships between ourselves, each other and our larger consumer culture as well as how to design in the Human Landscape.  On Sunday, we will learn How to Use and Care for Tools.  Both hand tools and power tools are an essential part of any land-based work.  We will cover the basic tool kit, trade-specific kits, power tools, safety and maintenance.

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Upcoming Permaculture Events 2022

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As we enter the new year, we are excited to offer paths towards abundant solutions.

We have been quietly hibernating during the past few years of Covid but feel it is time to reboot and get this information out to people who need it. With all the issues facing us at this time we feel we compelled to share solutions that help people learn positive ways to move forward in their own life.

Collectively we are facing so many challenges; from supply chain issues, drought, flood, fires, inflation, healthcare crisis, to ecosystem degradation and social collapse. There are tools in the Permaculture tool box that can solve all these issues.

We would like to invite you to take check out the offerings for this year, and look forward to sharing solutions to the problems of our time.


“Though the problems of the world are increasingly complex,

the solutions remain embarrassingly simple.”

― Bill Mollison founder of Permaculture


Hands on Permaculture Design Certificate Course Event! May through July, Learn the skills to work with nature to create integrated Permaculture systems of abundance and productivity! Early bird price ends soon. Find out more »

Permaculture Tour and Meet-Up Feb 25 Inspiration farm, Free!

A Free gathering time for People interested in Permaculture from Whatcom county to come together and discuss ideas. Agenda– Tour, talk, swap plants seeds, books. After the tour we invite you to stay for an informal discussion. How can we move…
Find out more »

Circle of Permes

Great Grafting / Propagation Gathering March 12th, $20

Create your own Fruit Nursery Stock. Fruit Tree Grafting and Propagation from Cuttings. Pruning season is upon us! Remember to save scion wood for the Grafting Gathering! You can learn how to collect scion wood here. Bring Apple, Pear, Plum…
Find out more »


Practical Permaculture Immersion Weekend March 19th & 20th, $150

A fun filled Permaculture Immersion Weekend. We will illustrate practical ways to design an integrated living system that that partners with nature and is self regulating, abundant and resilient. Whether you are on an urban lot or a farm homestead,… Find out more »


Scythes the Cutting Edge! April  9th, $40

Sell the weed eater and use a scythe! Maintain your body, not your machines. Learn the sharper points of this elegant tool. Thought to be old school, but better blades and an ergonomic set up makes them one of the most efficient tools out there. Find out more »


PERMACULTURE DAY TOUR & PLANT SALE / SWAP May 1st, Free!

We will celebrate International Permaculture Day May 1st 2022!

A day to showcase permaculture around the world.  An opportunity to experience permaculture and meet its practitioners. Visitors can see first hand an established permaculture system and ask questions. See how…
Find out more »


Food Forest & Permaculture Guild Plants May 14, $40

Plant a garden, eat for a year, plant a Food Forest Guild, eat for decades! This hands on workshop shares design elements necessary for a perennial food forest. Learn about fruit and nut trees as well as supper food berries… Find out more »


Permaculture Design Certificate Course, May through July, $1500

Hands on Event! Learn the skills to work with nature to create integrated Permaculture systems of abundance and productivity! Find out more »

4 weekends and a five day camp out.

  • Weekends May 21,22, June 4,5 & 18,19, July 9,10
  • Camp out design session July 18,19,20,21,22 –
  • 13 days total, Daily Time: 9am – 6pm

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Whatcom PDC Covid-19 Update

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Greetings Resilient Whatcom PDC 2020 Students and Friends our Hands-on PDC has been postponed, However…

At this juncture we are excited to offer you several new choices to get your Permaculture Design Certificate.

1) If you would like to get your PDC certification now via an online course we offer you the opportunity to enroll at Oregon State University world class PDC. They have offered to open this up to our students at a discount as a result of Covid-19 affecting many face to face courses. 

OSU offers the full course content taught by two of our top Cascadia colleagues, Marisha Auerbach and Andrew Millison, along with many guest experts. This class has been offered by OSU for the past 8 years and is PINA certified. They will partner with us so that we can act as your local mentors helping guide you through the 10 week self paced course. Our students will receive weekly support and guidance from Brian and Bruce!

To find more information and to enroll in OSU’s online PDC program, the link is here.

When you register for the OSU PDC please make sure to use the promo code BKPerm and you will receive a 5% discount. About $45 off the regular price. We will start our group by May 1 so please register before then and let us know.

If you decide to do the OSU course we could plan to do an optional hands-on workshop in the future. This would flush out your competency in permaculture design skills. There would be an addition cost.

We hope to offer this Hands-On, in-person PDC course in the future so that you may get the full experience. The dates are obviously yet to be determined. Stay posted for more on this.
If you would like a refund of your course tuition we are happy to offer you a refund. 

We hope to be able to provide some free content and information that will give some tools and things you can do right now as well as information to get your gardens and nursery production going in order to create some resilience for the near future. Sign up to receive notifications for events here.

We can also offer some virtual consultations and mentorships while still practicing physical distancing.

Thank you for bearing with this process. We hope you find a path that works for you at this time. If you have any questions don’t be afraid to ask.

Wishing you all health, insight and resilience during this time of reflection and interconnection.

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Why get a Permaculture Certificate?

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People sometimes ask us “why do I need to get a PDC? I can just learn it from books and Youtube”. Some of the many reasons why you may want to get your PDC are:

  • You want the complete picture of permaculture
  • To get the full Permaculture experience with like minded people.
  • You want the hands on experiences and design practices
  • You like the accreditation and validation a certificate gives
  • You like the cohesiveness that a PDC immersion class offers

The reasons you need to get a PDC is to be legitimate using the word Permaculture in your professional practice.

  • If you want to teach classes on permaculture
  • If you want to run a business using Permaculture as a guiding force
  • If you aspire to teach a full PDC at some point
  • If you want to be a Permaculture consultant or designer for others

We LOVE the thought that some of our students will go on to become teachers. Whether it is short workshops or presentations or involved in full permaculture design courses.

Geoff Lawton answers some of theses questions.

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PDC Course Overview

What Does a PDC Curriculum Cover?

The curriculum covers a wide variety of subjects. The first four weekends are stand-alone being a broad overview of design principles, strategies and techniques. The 5 day campout will focus on their practical application. Together the two weeks constitute the 72+ Hour Design Permaculture Certification Course as designed by Permaculture co-founder, Bill Mollison. Students who complete the two-week curriculum earn the internationally recognized Permaculture Design Consultant Certification. To date, thousands of permaculture designers worldwide have been certified through this course, and now comprise a global network of educators and ecological activists. They go out into the world and; influence major corporations, become individuals creating new business alternatives, and groups of committed people working together to change the way we view and design our landscapes and communities.

View the rough course schedule here. The order of topics in a course may change due to the presence of guest instructors, and emphasis on certain subjects may shift due to the needs and focus of the participants, such as urban or rural residents, city planners, farmers, and so on. This course will not make you an expert in any of the individual subjects covered, although in many cases we go into considerable depth. The point of the course is to introduce you to the relationships and synergies among the disciplines that permaculture connects. In a sense, permaculture creates an ecology made up of the many tools and concepts used to design sustainable communities. You will learn what these tools are and how to decide which to use, and when. The course will show you how these subjects connect leaving you with a whole systems design strategy to work with.

Permaculture Design Process camp out week:

Building on the foundations presented in the first four weekends, knowledge and skills will be expanded and tied together. Leading to a final real life design exercise, mapping and placing elements within a holistic design.

  • Including: Natural Building
  • Solar Design
  • Water management
  • Ecosystem restoration
  • Climatic considerations
  • Eco-Village
  • Community Structures
  • Urban Design
  • Aquaculture
  • Animal Husbandry
  • Alternative Governance

Design groups will present to the class for critique and comment. Optional on-site Camping with lunch and dinner during the last five days at Inspiration Farm. This will provide opportunities to immerse in the design process and partake in after hour activities.

Local Lodging can be arranged for this time. Let us know if you need help making arrangements.

Who Would Benefit From Attending This Course?

This course teaches you to observe at various levels — cycles in nature, movements in history, practices across cultures, patterns in social behavior and increase one’s awareness to learn how to interact harmoniously with nature to achieve your goals. The Permaculture Design Course will help jump start one’s learning curve on all these fronts. Permaculture uses ecological principles to design sustainable human communities that are harmoniously woven into the environment, aiming to have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems. Design professionals can add new qualifications to their resumes and offer improved services to their clients. Their designs tend to use fewer resources, work more efficiently, and are easier to maintain. Most participants find the course life-changing, and they form powerful new viewpoints and enhanced social networks.

  • – Homeowners, gardeners, and farmers learn to increase the value and productivity of their property and to create home and land environments that better support their own needs as well as nature’s.
  • –  Real estate, construction, and development professionals are able to better address the public’s growing concern for the environment and to reduce resource use and impacts.
  • –  Educators learn to integrate permaculture design into their curriculum in ways that have been proven to raise student performance.
  • –  Planners and public officials find holistic solutions to land-use and resource issues, and will identify and solve bottlenecks and impediments to implementing their programs.
  • –  Energy, water, and waste-systems workers will learn holistic management strategies for integrating their projects into the larger community.

The Permaculture Design Course is one of the few educational systems in the world of its size that allows so much freedom to students and teachers alike. The course material and presentation is structured to address different learning styles. Each topic expands and deepens our understanding of the previous topics, so the knowledge and understanding of the student is gradually built up. The permaculture design course teaches whole-systems thinking. Systems thinking focuses on the relationships among the parts, the features that emerge from these relationships.

Design Exercises help bring this into application and make corrections. Just as the course material is vast in its size and scope, the course presentation extends beyond the classroom teaching, design exercises and audio-visual sessions. Permaculture flows over to the meals shared, nature walks/garden visits, learning new practical skills and checking theoretical learning with experiments.

What does a Permaculture Design Certificate enable you to do?

With this certificate a graduate may confidently use the word ‘permaculture’ in the promotion of their work or business world wide. During the course the students are made aware of various ethically profitable business opportunities that exist in today’s changing world scenario. This might include:

  • Use the term Permaculture in your business
  • Permaculture design consulting
  • Landscaping and implementation of design
  • Teaching and facilitating groups.
  • Working with aid organizations
  • Managing a farm or other garden projects, large or small
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