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Permaculture in Your Garden (and Life!)


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Permaculture is a design philosophy that is commonly applied to gardening, but which can also be applied to larger systems: businesses, educational endeavors, and other life work. In this class, we cover the personalities behind and basic principles of permaculture, introduce resources for learning more in the Portland area, and discuss how permaculture can be applied across disciplines. Folks who have earned or are pursuing the Permaculture Design Certificate or have done self-study in permaculture are welcome; this is a very basic class, but there will be time for all participants to share their experiences with and thoughts about p’culture.

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Permaculture in Your Garden (and Life!)

  1. 1. January 2012 © Independence Gardens LLC Download the handout that goes along with this slideshow! h p:// Permaculture Independence Gardens Portland, ORTuesday, January 31, 2012
  2. 2. What We’ll Cover Today Preview Got Questions? Topics We’ll Cover • Permaculture: de nition Please ask as we go along. • Permaculture: origins • Permaculture: vocab • In gardens • Beyond gardens • Examples • What YOU can do with permaculture, January 31, 2012
  3. 3. What is it? • Design philosophy – Hard work now means less work later (but don’t put off harvesting something) • Ethics – Care for people: humans are part of natural systems – Care for earth: natural systems keep us all alive – Return the surplus (also “fair share”): limit consumption to ensure that all have access to resources to provide for themselves • Principles (via Toby Hemenway) – Observe. Connect. Catch and store energy and materials. Each element performs multiple functions/each function is supported by multiple elements. Make the least change for the greatest effect. Use small scale, intensive systems. Use the edge effect. Collaborate with succession. Use biological and renewable resources. Recycle energy. Turn problems into solutions. Get a yield. e biggest limit to abundance is creativity. Mistakes are tools for learning.Tuesday, January 31, 2012
  4. 4. Where did it come from? • Bill Mollison ( that’s him with his wife ) & http:// greenconnections.wordpre • David Holmgren ( mollison-the-ultimate- strategist/ & http:// .au/article/ 2009/08/05/100145_count that’s him with his ry-living.html harvest )Tuesday, January 31, 2012
  5. 5. Key concepts: Zone • Bullseye – Zone 0: self/household – Zone 1: most visited, intensive use – Zone 2: semi-intensively managed – Zone 3: commerce/farm/ semi-public – Zone 4: minimal care/ public – Zone 5: unmanaged/ “wild”Tuesday, January 31, 2012
  6. 6. Key concepts: Sector • Oh well – External in uence on a site or situation – Cannot control it, so must design around itTuesday, January 31, 2012
  7. 7. Key concepts: Guild • Relationship – Group of plants that perform distinct and mutually bene cial functions – Most famous example is the “food forest”, January 31, 2012
  8. 8. Key concepts: Edge • Maximize the edge – e intersection of two environments – e most diverse place in a system – Where energies and materials accumulateTuesday, January 31, 2012
  9. 9. Permaculture in the garden • “Close to home” • Native plant backbones with edibles integrated • A place you want to spend time • Inviting to other bene cials, off-pu ing to those you want to stay away, January 31, 2012
  10. 10. Beyond the garden • Health & well-being – Body = garden – Everything in relationship • Living spaces – Green building – Natural building – Re-urbanizing • Business • Stuff & thingsTuesday, January 31, 2012
  11. 11. Example 1 • Who: two-busy-person and a big dog household in SW PDX • Goals: create low-maintenance native garden space; grow food • Process: collaborative whiteboard design, zone mappingTuesday, January 31, 2012
  12. 12. Example 2 • Who: young couple in NE PDX • Goals: use existing garden space for edibles; plant rest in natives • Process: base mapping, calendaring, bed-by-bed schedule 2009 Planting Plan Prepared by Independence Gardens LLC h p:// * IndependenceGardensPDX@gmail.comTuesday, January 31, 2012
  13. 13. Example 3 • Who: 4-person family & their pets new to long lot in Woodburn • Goals: food production, play space for two boys • Process: base mapping, plant ID, invasive removal, timelineTuesday, January 31, 2012
  14. 14. Next steps for you! • Good design requires spending time in your garden space • If you’re not going to actively manage a space, design for that • Design and implementation take time, so make time for both parts • Evaluate...& prepare to re-evaluate • is is a process and a journey, not a solution or a destination • Finally, a good design will push you in the right direction, but won’t change behaviorTuesday, January 31, 2012
  15. 15. Questions?Tuesday, January 31, 2012