Permaculture Design Certification
with Spencer Nielsen
April 4 - 11, 2024
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.
Online / Onsite Course Format
Live web classes will be held on –
at 6pm-8pm, Pacific Standard Time (required for the Permaculture Design Certification).
FOUNDATIONS OF PERMACULTURE & VEDIC SCIENCES
– Intro to Permaculture, Site analysis, Vedic Sciences
– Permaculture Design, Working with climate and microclimates, Vastu Shastra
SOIL & WATER CARE
– Soil Science and Soil Care Strategies
– Hydrology & Water harvesting Strategies
AYURVEDIC AGRICULTURE: Plants and Prana
– Ayurveda & Agroforestry, Orcharding and tree care
– Medicinal food and herbs
– Social Permaculture and Ecovillage Design
– Economics and Land Access
– Natural Building and Passive Solar Design
– Renewable Energy
Recordings are available for all Online classes. So after you register you will have access to the materials.
- 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 an Online / Onsite training. You must complete all hours to receive your Permaculture Design Certificate. This format provides you with ample time in between lessons to study, apply what you learned, and work on your ideas.
06:00 – 07:15 am Satsang: Silent meditation, chanting and lecture
08:00 – 10:00 am Yoga class
10:00 – 10:45 am Brunch
11:00 – 06:00 pm Hands-on Permaculture
06:00 – 06:45 pm Dinner
08:00 – 10:00 pm Satsang: meditation, chanting and lecture
Arrival and Departure
Arrival: Check-in time begins at 2PM on the first date listed above. The course will begin with an orientation at 7pm on the first Date of the course with an Ashram Orientation followed by Satsang at 8pm.
Departure: The course will conclude at 3pm on the Final date.
What to Bring
Slip on shoes, waterproof work boots, work gloves, hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, bug repellent (we recommend organic or essential oil based bug sprays), loose comfortable and durable clothing, writing materials, meditation shawl or blanket, yoga mat, flashlight.
Students will be provided with supplemental reading material in digital form as well as a recommended reading list.
Additional books and materials are available in our boutique.
Are meals included in the course?
Yes. Two high quality organic vegetarian meals are provided daily. It is served buffet style, so you are welcome to take a little extra for an afternoon snack. You are also welcome to bring your own snacks, but please follow the Ashram dietary guidelines. We have a shared student fridge available for storing food. Our boutique sells various vegan, gluten-free, organic and/or fair-trade snacks and beverages.
Can you accommodate special diet needs or food allergies?
We will do our best to accommodate your needs.
We follow a strict yogic lacto-vegetarian diet at the Ashram. We never serve eggs, garlic, onion, mushrooms, meat or fish. Our meals always have vegan and gluten free options (including a salad bar). However we cannot guarantee suitable conditions for people with a severe gluten intolerance or people with celiac disease. Dairy (i.e milk, cheese or yogurt) is served separately on occasion and is sometimes included in our dishes.
Can I commute to the course?
We recommend staying at the ashram to gain the full experience and immersion in Yoga life, however, we understand it is not always possible for people. Please email us at [email protected] to ask for permission to commute. If approved, commuters are still asked to attend both morning and evening Satsang and one yoga class per day.
Do you offer scholarships and/or work trade?
Scholarships are not always available but sometimes discounts are offered on a case-by-case basis, contingent upon approval from the course instructors and the directors of the Ashram. Email [email protected] with your reason for requesting a scholarship. We may ask for supporting financial documents and references.
We do not offer “word-trade” per se, but if you are interested in serving at the Yoga Farm you can fill out the Seva Study or Karma Yoga application. You can specify that you are interested in the Permaculture Design Course on the application. You may still be responsible for course tuition even if you are a volunteer.
Have more questions?
Email us at [email protected] or call us at 530-272-9322.
Spencer Nielsen is a guide to Nature inside and out, in the wild lands, gardens, and consciousness. He is a permaculture designer and educator based in Fairfax, California. He has studied Ecology, Environmental Education, and Eco-Social Design, as well as Permaculture, Yoga, Qigong, Ayurveda, Daoist medicine, and Planetary…
Learn more about Spencer Nielsen