Last Saturday was Day 1 of our annual Saturday PDC at Ecoburbia. Starting a new Permaculture course is always a bit exciting. A new group of students I don’t know yet (spoiler alert: Permaculture students are always lovely), and the normal excitement of first days. This course is extra-special, because someone very close to my heart has decided to join us.
The Saturday PDC will meet once a month, so gets the chance to see this wonderful property through all seasons. We started with a scorcher – 41 degrees outside – and were amazed at how beautiful and productive the property looked despite the recent heatwaves. An inspiring place to see for sure.
On first arrival, students are encouraged to make themselves a cuppa and settle in, but then are put to work straight away, ripping up cardboard for the compost. No awkward silences waiting for things to start with us. We find that busy hands connect more easily, and everyone was chatting and laughing in no time.
The first day of any course starts with a tour of where we are, to ground us in place, give us an idea of all the topics that will be covered in a PDC, and inspiration of what we are aiming to create.
Next, we work out why we have chosen this course. What is the story of Homo sapiens? What are our worries for the future? Why are we looking at Permaculture for an alternative? This session can be a bit depressing, but rest assured, it is the only one. We acknowledge our fears, then move on to what permaculture is all about – positive solutions.
Ecology is our next topic. If permaculture is all about ‘working with nature, not against it’ or even ‘mimicking nature’, then we have to understand the rules nature plays by. Some may find this session an unexpected throwback to their primary school days, but I’m sure you haven’t heard it put together in this way.
Permaculture Ethics and Principles are the main topic of Day 1. They are what sets us apart from other design systems for land management, so we spend quite a bit of time on them. We even try to permaculture the jobs we are currently working in!
The day ends with a first introduction to creating a basemap. What sectors influence our properties, and how can we map them. Day 2 will focus on this in more detail.
As you can see from the big smiles in the photos – we also had a lot of fun, great conversations, shared yummy food and started to make new friends.
If you feel like you’re missing out, we will offer one more PDC this year. Click here to get all the ins and outs about it.