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Rose Pinder
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Location: Otago, New Zealand
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Hi Aranya,

Can you please talk about the differences in using your book for people that have done a PDC and those that haven't?

cheers,
Rose.
 
Aranya
Author
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Location: Seaton, Devon, England
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Hi Rose,

If you've done a PDC many of the terms in the book will already be familiar to you, but anyone who has had at least a basic introduction to permaculture (either in the form of a short course or an introductory book) should be able to follow it ok.

The book essentially details the design process that we use as one of the main activities on PDCs here in Britain, so it will be particularly familiar to anyone who has followed a similar curriculum. Anyone who hasn't now has the chance to do some action learning for themselves on their own projects - in my mind the best way to learn.
 
Rose Pinder
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I was thinking also of the people who have done a fair amount of permaculture (and permie design) but have never done a PDC.


Am looking forward to the UK perspective, nice to have some more material coming from there (I'm in NZ).
 
Aranya
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Location: Seaton, Devon, England
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Hi Rose,

Folks who have done a fair amount of permaculture will have no trouble following the book and should still get plenty of useful ideas from reading it.

Yes, it's a UK approach though, which certainly seemed to take on board several new elements when it arrived here in the 1980s, including the idea of using a design framework which is the pattern used for the book.
 
Rose Pinder
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Nice, thanks.
 
Rose Pinder
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Hmm, I have another question. Would you like to comment on the issue of permaculture being perceived and/or practiced as a set of techniques rather than a design process? It comes up on forum discussions a bit, so would be interested to hear your perspective, esp in a UK context . (I know the UK forum is much more focussed on design permies).
 
Aranya
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Location: Seaton, Devon, England
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Hi Rose,

Techniques only make sense if they are appropriate to local conditions and the desired outcomes (raised beds are useful in wet landscapes, but not in dry ones where pit planting makes more sense). How do we find this out? Well some things (like the example I just used) are obvious, but many other are identified by going through a design process. Without any truly sustainable techniques to choose from the design process isn't helpful, so one supports the other. I see them connected in this way (but imagine these as nested circles with ethics in the middle):

Ethics -> Principles -> Design -> Techniques
 
Brenda Groth
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Location: North Central Michigan
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in my studies and reviews i am aware that England used to use a lot of hedges and hedgerows for windbeaks ..etc..and then many of them were ripped out and removed (i love the old heges and the old british gardens )..I was wondering if food forest type of gardening is beginning to catch on at all in the british isles??
 
Aranya
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Location: Seaton, Devon, England
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A lot of hedgerows have been ripped out in certain areas, especially the flatter landscapes, but many hedges still remain. The main issue is the way they are managed - often with a mechanical flail on the back of a tractor, which results in hedges with very dense growth at the top and big gaps at the bottom. So still useful for much wildlife, but not always as effective windbreaks or as stock-proof barriers.
 
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