Fresh out of my Permaculture Design Certification Course with Geoff Lawton I was given the opportunity to present a 30 minute course about Permaculture as a part of the annual Homesteading Fair at the Mississippi Modern Homestead Center. Approximately 24 people attended the class.
I prepared a presentation I entitled “Permaculture Awareness”. Larry Santoyo of the Permaculture Academy was kind enough to allow me to lead-in with his exercise to explain what Permaculture is. You can hear his explanation yourself, in part, on the PermacultureVoices Podcast, What’s a PDC 1 of 2.
In short, it emphasizes very well that permaculture is not only about sound food production, but about all things that make a community sustainable.
I then presented the 3 ethics of permaculture; Care of Earth, Care of People, Return of Surplus, and explained how they are interconnected and support one another and gave an example of how the ethics are employed in design.
That lead us to a discussion about one concept of permaculture – that of connecting one element to multiple elements – creating a network of connections, a web, throughout the site. We spoke about how we design a site to identify the products, including those typically deemed as wastes, from one element and how those can then become inputs for other elements, limiting what energy leave the site.
We also spoke about one method of permaculture, that of using contours to hold, slow and spread water across a site. We talked about the need to capture water as high as we can so we do not have to spend energy to pump it to a higher elevation.
It was certainly tempting to delve in to more of the concepts and methods and the nuances behind site analysis and design, but the purpose of this class was to help the attendees be more aware of what permaculture really is and why it should be something for them to research.
It was a pleasure to meet several new people and to discuss many other topics and details on the sidelines. It was great to hear about their stories and curiosities and what they felt permaculture could do for them – including a gentleman who was just beginning to search for property (what an amazing opportunity!).
I will certainly look forward to having more opportunities to teach at the Mississippi Homestead Center, it was a lovely venue to be at.
Note: If you are asking yourself why this is a blog and not a video it is because I made a mistake. When the class first began there were only 4 people and I didn’t feel it would be something worth filming. 10 minutes into the class 20 more people walked in. I certainly do wish I had recorded it. It is a mistake I shall not make again.