Four-Season Permaculture Design Course
An internationally recognized, 72-hour training in the ethics, principles, methods, techniques, and practices of Permaculture Design + 24 extra teaching hours + 24 hours group/independent work, a 120 hour certificate course.
Learn about Permaculture throughout the seasons, with a focus on Temperate climates.
This exciting and innovative Design Course covers the standard 72-hour PDC curriculum commonly taught all over the world, and includes bonus information tailored to the colder climate of Carolinian Canada in Ontario. As well, practical, hands-on modules to deepen active learning about permaculture processes and design through the various climates of the year.
What is Four-Season Permaculture
The Four-Season is a hands-on, skill based program to help you develop the knowledge and skills you need to bring sustainability and regenerative practices into your personal and professional live. Through this course, you will discover ways to design thriving neighborhoods, regenerate environments and accelerate positive community change.
This PDC is designed to take a permaculture student through the four seasons of nature's rhythms. You will acquire the skills to meet the challenging cultural, environmental and energy-supply changes that face us.
You will learn how to use the same principles that create self-sustaining ecological systems and apply them to your homes, gardens and community. You will learn principles for sustainable energy systems and water supplies, healthy communities, ecological economies and nature awareness practices.
The four-seasons format allows you time to implement what you have learned and bring your experiences and questions back to the training for feedback and discussion.
The ultimate goal of Permaculture is not only of food, medicine and new energy sources, but also the cultivation and excellence of fresh new ways of seeing, of thinking, of acting and being in the world.
What is Unique to this course:
- Four-Distinct Seasonal Weekends
- Established Forest Gardens (1983)
- Local Permaculture Educators with 30+ years experience
- Unique DVD Adobe Reader
- Forest Gardening e-Book Manual
- Essence of Permaculture Manual
- A copy Bill Mollison's "An Introduction To Permaculture" An Edited Transcript of a PDC
- Nature & local plant identification
- Practical application of Deep Ecology & Living Systems Theory
Creating Resilient Community Leaders
Permaculture is an invaluable tool for homeowners, homesteaders, small farmers, urban and rural
gardeners, educators, landscapers, architects, bioregionalists, city planners, foresters, reclamation specialists, transition networks , neighbourhood organizers and anyone interested in sustainable living, and those interested in a career as a Permaculture Designer.
Four-Season Permaculture blends a full Permaculture certification course with nature awareness practices, teaching visionary and practical solutions for personal and social change.
This course gives primary attention to regenerative living systems design for a temperate climate and is taught by certified instructors who live and create within the temperate zone.
About The Course
The course will take place over 14 days, with a total of five weekends from April to November.
This four-season training course offers a broad-brush overview of the regenerative design principles of permaculture, with time spent each workshop on the design and application of an Edible Forest Garden.
The radical idea behind organic permaculture agriculture is to bring in a new consciousness. One set on an agricultural system that supports quality of the crops grown and sustainable methods that meet the needs of people, the earth and future generations.
Throughout this training course, students work in small groups to incorporate what they are learning into real-world permaculture design projects. The course culminates in the presentation of each group's design project. Upon completion participants become certified as a Permaculture Designer and receive a Permaculture Design Certificate recognized worldwide
There will be a balance between classroom time, hands-on experimental learning and personal empowerment work. This training will be useful for people with varying levels of experience - from backyard gardeners to design professionals.
"Though the problems of the world are increasingly complex, the solutions remain embarrassingly simple" ~Bill Mollison (co-originator of the Permaculture concept)
Our mission is to offer an innovative program that empower participants to think and act beyond existing views and belief systems. To cultivate pioneers and visionary leaders who want to bring their unique gifts to the world through the fields of Permaculture design.
The Living Centre provides a rich learning environment in a beautiful rural setting in southwestern Ontario, Canada. Founded in 1983, The Living Centre is a 50 acre educational Centre with wild meadows, forest-woodland, swimming pond, organic fruit orchards and a variety of forest gardens that incorporate native plants of Carolinian Canada. The land has always been organic. The spacious surroundings offer you a perfect setting for learning and growing.
The Centre is known for its unique circular medicine wheel herbal, forest gardens and edible medicine trail through the beautiful Carolinian forest. The teaching lodge is surrounded by a 1000 sq. ft. Earthship solar greenhouse which provides organic produce for nine months of the year.
You will experience a lifestyle approach to education that supports respect for life, human dignity, freedom, ecological sustainability and peace.
Everything you will need to know to create a fulfilling life you can learn from Nature.
Do What You Love and Become the Change!
We are in a time on Earth when careers focused in building a culture of regeneration are rapidly replacing careers centred on productivity, consumerism, greed and war. Careers that are life-supporting, ecologically sustainable and support the human spirit will soon become the norm. If you are enthusiastic about creating a new culture based on sustainability and respect for all life and want to learn how to implement and share this knowledge, the Earth WisdomPermaculture Training is for you. Never before has this kind of training been so needed!
Creating a Fulfilling Career
Upon completion of the program you will be eligible to teach the EarthWisdom Permaculture in your community and eco-systems.
The Permaculture can be taught through private consultations, workshops, in schools and colleges, in holistic centres and in professional institutions, which incorporate innovative processes to improve the health and well-being of your community.
Many have successfully incorporated the Permaculture Teachings into their already existing careers. These include: one-to-one whole system design, regenerative education, ecological endeavors and all careers that are passionately committed to the noblest aspirations of humankind.
Be a part of the solution!
This team of instructors brings decades of experience in cold climate Permaculture and a passion that inspires!
Shantree Kacera, D.N., Ph.D. and Lorenna Kacera are founders and directors of The Living Centre and Living Arts Institute (est. 1983). Together they blend their over 35 years each, of experience to offer programs that support individuals in the practice of conscious living. Through Permaculture, Earth Wisdom Teachings, the Sevenfold Path of Peace, Ayurvedic Teachings, and a Live-Plant-Food-based lifestyle they support individuals in living healthier, more regenerative lives.
Lorenna and Shantree are internationally celebrated visionaries, authors, permaculture teachers, regenerative educators, nutritional researchers and world peace workers.
Shantree Kacera D.N., Ph.D. is Certified Permaculture Designer & Educator, an Ayurvedic Live-Food Nutritionist, Therapeutic & Shamanic Herbalist with a specialty in Forest Gardening with over with 35 years experience. Shantree's deep spiritual connection to the Earth has drawn him into the teachings of shamanic and earth wisdom practices as well as Carolinian Canada native plant preservation and studies. He is a passionate edible forest gardener, and well known for his unique circular medicinal-wheel garden and medicine trail with over 1,000 species of edible and medicine plants and trees through the 50-acre botanical sanctuary.Since the mid 1980's Shantree has been applying permaculture practices. Creating his own unique approach to how does Permaculture work in Canada. After 25 years he is now sharing his experiences with his students and apprentices who come to study Forest Gardening and Permaculture. Learn more>
Lorenna Bousquet-Kacera is a Certified Permaculture Educator with a specialty in evolutionary regeneration at the personal, ecological and spiritual levels. She is the founder of Shamanu: Earth Wisdom Teachings, practices that support an earth-based cosmology, teaching visionary and practical solutions for personal and social change. Her 30 years of training in the field of inner permaculture and deep ecology provides individuals with the skills to reconnect with the 'original instructions' revealed to us from nature. These skills empower the bringing forth of our full potential, so that we may bring active and practical solutions for personal, community and environmental benefit. Lorenna is the co-director with her sacred partner Shantree of Spirit of the Earth, The Living Centre.
Lorenna sees that our hope for the future is to adopt a new concept of human ecology; one in which we celebrate the gifts of imagination and creativity. Lorenna believes that it is our creativity and balance of the Feminine and Masculine values that support life that will guide us to the answers that change and empower our lives, our world and future generations. Learn more>
Jessica Roder is the owner of Wild Craft Permaculture. She has been working with permaculture principles for several years at a variety of scales, from the home garden to the neighbourhood. She integrates her backgrounds in biology, education, and urban planning into her work. Jessie is an engaging teacher who instils passion and practical knowledge in her students and believes firmly in experiential learning. Jessie is on the steering committee of Transition London Ontario, and she loves riding her bicycle and howling, usually simultaneously.
John is an electrical engineer who has been following the alternative energy field since his university days. He has a strong background in industrial automation and electrical system. He is current studying renewable energy systems, from solar thermal to geothermal system. John has completed a PDC and his interests extends to the world of “free energy” as well. What did Tesla know about tapping the energy of the ethers, or Myers in splitting water into hydrogen and running a car on it? John will share his knowledge and insight of the energy that we see as a corner stone to our future.
Rob spends his time outside his day-job as Administrative Assistant in the Rotman Institute of Philosophy at Western University between permaculture, writing, and spending time with his family. Rob's passion for forest gardening and permaculture began when he came across Robert Hart's book about his forest garden at a used book fair. This dovetailed nicely with his concern over our current food production system, and made perfect sense based on his many years as a naturalist and amateur ecologist. Over the past five years he has been actively converting his half-acre property from a lawn to a forest garden and edible landscape. Since 2009, he has been actively involved with Transition Middlesex, a part of the Transition Network, an international initiative to help us navigate the path to a future that is short on oil, but high on abundance. Prior to pursuing permaculture, Rob trained in creative writing at York University, and his poetry appears in O Spam, Poams (2005, BookThug) as well as in numerous magazines and small press publications. He is currently working on a science fiction novel for young adults with permaculture as a central theme.
Mat Redsell is an energy expert who has been experimenting with sustainable living design that is cost effective and designed for the every day person. He brings knowledge to the areas of solar electric systems, windmill construction, hot water systems, biodiesel, recycling, composting toilets, heating systems and more. He is a 'warehouse' of information and knowledge and believes strongly in 'learning by doing'. Alternative Energy resources
Ken & Martha Laing - Orchard Hill
Orchard Hill is a 80 acre organic farm powered by Suffolk Punch draft horses, established in 1979 by Ken and Martha Laing. It is located on a ridge northwest of the village of Sparta Ontario near Lake Erie, giving it a spectacular view. They both grew up with connections to farming and studied at the University of Guelph. Later Ken's passion for agriculture led him to earn a degree in horticulture.
During this tour Martha and Ken will take us through their thriving CSA project, their gardens, passive solar green house and of course their experience and knowledge of using draft horses rather than machinery to machine their large production of organic crops. This tour is one of the highlights of the PDC.
Orchard Hill CSA
Chris & Wil Dancey
For the past twenty-five years, Chris and Wil Dancey have been accumulating knowledge about the many materials and methods that are used to build healthy, sustainable, natural buildings. As owner builders, they have built with local materials including industrial hemp, lime, clay, wood and stone. Their home is a round log timber frame with hemp and lime infill for insulation. They have constructed a living roof and a heating system that includes a masonry heater and radiant floors.
During their presentation, they will take you on a virtual tour of building projects from around the world that have had a minimal impact on the environment, while providing truly beautiful structures for play, work and living. There will be many examples of natural building in Canada and discussion about using local materials will be included. Chris & Wil Dancey, Natural Homes
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** And other local instructors to support your permaculture journey
This course will include hands-on projects, lectures, discussions, slide shows, field trips and design projects.
Course Topics Include:
We will draw on observation skills, indigenous wisdom, modern science and the wisdom and teachings of each of the Elements – Air, Fire, Water, Earth & Ether.
- Nature Awareness Techniques
- Creating Edible Food Forests of Carolinian Canada
- Foraging and Plant Identification Building Organic Soil
- Enhancing Nutrient Flow - Bioremediation: healing soil and water withbeneficial bacteria, compost teas, fungi, & plants
- Building Design using Local, Natural and Recycled Materials
- Permaculture Elements & Design Science
- Pattern Thinking in Design & Strategy
- Microclimate Creation
- Appropriate Technologies that support these changing times
- Alternative Energy Systems - from small to large
- Ecosystem Dynamics & Social Strategies
- Cold Climate Energy Conservation
- Four Season Permaculture
- Food Harvest & Storage and Wild Fermentation
- Bioregionalism & Relocalization
- Humans' role as Nature-in-Action
- Eco-Communities & the Transition Culture
- Water Ecology & Preservation
- Roof Water Harvesting
- Community Economics: Local Trading Systems
- Waste Water Systems
- Deep Ecology and Trauma Transformation
- Ethics of Ecological Design
- Theory and Permaculture Principles
- Designing Your Inner Garden
- Earth Wisdom Teachings
- Evolutionary Leadership
- Rituals to Honor & Celebrate Nature
Participants will come away able to apply a tool box of skills to create regenerative eco-systems that supports oneself, one's community and the earth. Students will have the opportunity to connect to a global network of Permaculture, regenerative design, and nature awareness contacts and projects.
"By learning you will teach; by teaching you will understand."~Latin Proverb
Recommended - but not required - reading for the course
* Permaculture: Principles & Pathways Beyond Sustainability (HolmgrenDesign Services, 2009)
* Permaculture: A Designers Manual(Bill Mollison, Tagari Publications)
* Introduction to Permaculture: (Bill Mollison, Tagari Publications)
* Forest Gardening: Cultivating an Edible Landscape (Robert A. De J. Hart)
* Edible Forest Gardens: Volume One: Vision & Theory (Dave Jacke withEric Toensmeir)
* Edible Forest Gardens: Volume Two: Design & Practice (Dave Jacke withEric Toensmeir)
* Gaia's Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture (Toby Hemenway, Chelsea Green, 2009)
* Creating a Forest Garden (Martin Crawford, Green Books)
* How to Make a Forest Garden (Patrick Whitefield, Permanent Publications)
* Permaculture DVD Adobe Reader ~ Compiled by Lorenna & Shantree Kacera & Our Permaculture Teaching Team
9:00 - 9:30 Introduction & Nature Awareness practice
9:30 - 11:00 Session
11:00 - 11:20 Nature Break
11:20 - 1:00 Session
1:00 - 2:30 - Lunch
2:30 - 5 - Session
5:00 - 5:30 Integration
Dates Four Season Permaculture:
Winter - April 6-8, 2013
Spring - May 25-27, 2013
Summer - July 27-29, 2013
Fall - September 28-30
Design Project Presentations & Graduation Ceremony - Nov. 23 & 24, 2013
EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT - $1300. when registered and paid in full by March 6, 2013
$1400 after March 6, - includes all classes, delicious organic living food lunch and DVD Adobe Reader Permaculture Course Manual. Does not include tax and accommodations.
Early Payment Discounts
• Partner/Spouse Discount - Partners who take the course together get the second tuition at an additional $100 off.
• Student Discount – Full-time students get the course at an additional $100 off.
• Family Discount - Two adults who would like to take this course with a son or daughter between age 16 - 19 receive a 50% discount off their child's tuition ($700)
Work-exchange of up to $300 available. Work exchange can occur before and during the course period. You do not lose any teaching hours during the exchange. Please inquire.
Payment can be made by Paypal (below) Visa or certified cheque.
Please make cheques payable and send to:
The Living Centre
5871 Bells Rd., London, ON., Canada, N6P 1P3
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