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Permaculture Design Certification, 2-Part Hands-On Course in California

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Location: Sivananda Yoga Farm, Grass Valley, CA
Contact: +1 530-272-9323 krishnadasyogafarm@gmail.com

This is a two-part Permaculture Design Course.

Part I: April 2-7, 2020
Part II: June 5-11, 2020

You must attend both to receive a Permaculture Design Certificate.

Lydia Neilsen
Spencer Nielsen

The course will follow the structure and content of internationally-recognized PDC’s, while adding principles and practices of Yoga and Ayurveda. We will look to the roots of permaculture with Bill Mollison and David Holmgren as well as the application and influence it has had around the world.

The daily rhythm will include participation in the ashram’s meditation, chanting, & satsang, as well as pranayama & asana sessions. Two sattvic meals are provided, between which we will cover theory and practice of permaculture. Each day’s theme will include lecture, discussion, activities, and hands-on application to digest the content in a dynamic way. We will use the wild lands, fruit/nut orchards, gardens, and greenhouse as our classroom. The container of the ashram will provide it’s own education – learning to live in harmony with the daily rhythm of the land and the community. Yoga and Ayurveda will be explored in the context of holistic, regenerative living and will also provide frameworks for exploring permaculture in a Vedic way, such as through the five elements.

Course Content


soil science & soil food web
fertility management including composting, compost tea
natural building
agroforestry and agriculture
ayurvedic herbalism – growing and using medicinals
carbon sequestration
land access


rainwater harvesting
grey water design
irrigation basics
storing water in the landscape
alternative currencies


renewable energy
appropriate technology
fire ecology
ayurvedic diet and cooking
animals in the landscape


site analysis & self analysis (ayurvedic doshas, constitution)
reading the landscape
climatic strategies (ayurvedic concepts of desha, land)
creating and working with microclimates
mapping and map reading


history of permaculture and it’s roots in traditional cultures worldwide
permaculture ethics & yoga ethics: yama & niyama
permaculture principles
design strategies and ayurvedic elemental design
social permaculture
community organizing and governance
urban permaculture
international applications & opportunities
permaculture connection to yoga, ayurveda, vastu, jyotish (vedic astrology)

This is a two-part Permaculture Design Course. You must attend both to receive your Permaculture Design Certificate. This provides you with time in between to study, apply what you learned, and work on your homework (final design projects). Certificate is issued through Permaculture Institute of North America.

PART 1 will focus on the context of permaculture along with it’s foundations of principles and patterns. We will dive into core subjects such as soil, water, plants, and the basics of design. Students are expected to do some work/study in between courses and will present a final design project at the end of second week (in spring) – also a requisite for graduation.

PART 2 will focus on the wider application of permaculture to various climates, social permaculture and community governance. Infrastructure such as natural building and renewable energy will be taught alongside other “strategies for an alternative nation” (Mollison) such as land access and alternative economics. International and Vedic permaculture/agriculture will be explored as well. We will end with design presentations from students and a graduation ceremony.

06:00 – 08:00 am Satsang: Silent meditation, chanting and lecture
08:00 – 10:00 am Yoga class
10:00 – 10:45 am Brunch
11:00 – 04:00 pm Permaculture Class
11:00 – 04:00 pm Hands-on Permaculture
06:00 – 06:45 pm Dinner
08:00 – 10:00 pm Satsang: meditation, chanting and lecture
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