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8 forms of capital agroforestry apples beans bees beneficial berries biodigester blackberries blackthorn book review brain budget build building campesino capital Celtic festivals change changes chemical-free chickens circular clay pot climate change climate solutions climbing cob comfrey community compost compost teas connection consciousness conservation cooking coppice coppicing cordial cosmology crafts crisis cultural emergence culture cycles design diary diversity DIY do it yourself earth care Earth's energy economics ecopoetry ecosystem edges education efficiency elements energy ethics fair shares Fairtrade farming feedback feminine ferns figs firewood flowers food food forest forage foraging forest garden forest gardening fruit fruit trees future future care gardening garlic gift economy gin global poverty grapes greenhouse grow grow your own growing guilds habitat harvest harvests hazel hazelnut health healthy soil hedging herbs holistic planned grazing home homestead Hugelkultur humanure IBC tanks Indigenous inexpensive influence jam land landscape life livelihood livestock logs low cost market garden market gardening marmalade mass heater medicinal microbes mimic mindset mitigation money moringa Mother Earth multifunctional mushrooms native plants natural natural building natural fertiliser natural skincare natural swimming pool nature nitrogen no dig no-dig nutrition nuts observe off-grid orchard orchards organic outdoor shower oven oyster pallets pasture-fed patterns people people care perennials permaculture permaculture design permaculture magazine award permaculutre pests pips pizza oven plant profile plants pollinators polyculture polycultures preserving principles propagating pruning psycho-spiritual awareness psychospiritual transformation rainwater raspberries recipe recipes reduce reed beds regenerative agriculture relative location relative matter renewable renewable energy resources reuse revolution rootstock rootstocks roundhouse roundwood runner beans Scotland seasons Sepp Holzer september septic tanks sewage treatment shrubs skincare sloes slugs small solutions small-scale smallholding social justice soil health solar solutions spiritual spring stacking functions straw straw bale sustainable systems temperate terraces thistles timber timber framing toolkit tools trees upcycle urban vegan vermicomposting walnuts waste watering weeds wellbeing wetland wild food wildlife wings winter salads wood stove woodburner woodland woodland management woodlands worms year-round food yield zoning

Topics

8 forms of capital agroforestry apples beans bees beneficial berries biodigester blackberries blackthorn book review brain budget build building campesino capital Celtic festivals change changes chemical-free chickens circular clay pot climate change climate solutions climbing cob comfrey community compost compost teas connection consciousness conservation cooking coppice coppicing cordial cosmology crafts crisis cultural emergence culture cycles design diary diversity DIY do it yourself earth care Earth's energy economics ecopoetry ecosystem edges education efficiency elements energy ethics fair shares Fairtrade farming feedback feminine ferns figs firewood flowers food food forest forage foraging forest garden forest gardening fruit fruit trees future future care gardening garlic gift economy gin global poverty grapes greenhouse grow grow your own growing guilds habitat harvest harvests hazel hazelnut health healthy soil hedging herbs holistic planned grazing home homestead Hugelkultur humanure IBC tanks Indigenous inexpensive influence jam land landscape life livelihood livestock logs low cost market garden market gardening marmalade mass heater medicinal microbes mimic mindset mitigation money moringa Mother Earth multifunctional mushrooms native plants natural natural building natural fertiliser natural skincare natural swimming pool nature nitrogen no dig no-dig nutrition nuts observe off-grid orchard orchards organic outdoor shower oven oyster pallets pasture-fed patterns people people care perennials permaculture permaculture design permaculture magazine award permaculutre pests pips pizza oven plant profile plants pollinators polyculture polycultures preserving principles propagating pruning psycho-spiritual awareness psychospiritual transformation rainwater raspberries recipe recipes reduce reed beds regenerative agriculture relative location relative matter renewable renewable energy resources reuse revolution rootstock rootstocks roundhouse roundwood runner beans Scotland seasons Sepp Holzer september septic tanks sewage treatment shrubs skincare sloes slugs small solutions small-scale smallholding social justice soil health solar solutions spiritual spring stacking functions straw straw bale sustainable systems temperate terraces thistles timber timber framing toolkit tools trees upcycle urban vegan vermicomposting walnuts waste watering weeds wellbeing wetland wild food wildlife wings winter salads wood stove woodburner woodland woodland management woodlands worms year-round food yield zoning

What is Permaculture?

Wade Muggleton’s back garden has been designed using permaculture principles. He collects rainwater, uses vertical space for growing food to get the most out of his garden and incorporates a wide range of plants and varieties.

What is Permaculture?

  1. Permaculture is an innovative framework for creating sustainable ways of living.
  2. It is a practical method of developing ecologically harmonious, efficient and productive systems that can be used by anyone, anywhere.

By thinking carefully about the way we use our resources – food, energy, shelter and other material and non-material needs – it is possible to get much more out of life by using less. We can be more productive for less effort, reaping benefits for our environment and ourselves, for now and for generations to come.

This is the essence of permaculture – the design of an ecologically sound way of living – in our households, gardens, communities and businesses. It is created by cooperating with nature and caring for the earth and its people.

Permaculture is not exclusive – its principles and practice can be used by anyone, anywhere:

  • City flats, yards and window boxes
  • Suburban and country houses/garden
  • Allotments and smallholdings
  • Community spaces
  • Farms and estates
  • Countryside and conservation areas
  • Commercial and industrial premises
  • Educational establishments
  • Waste ground

Permaculture encourages us to be resourceful and self-reliant. It is not a dogma or a religion but an ecological design system which helps us find solutions to the many problems facing us – both locally and globally.

Writer Emma Chapman defines it as:

“Permaculture, originally ‘Permanent Agriculture’, is often viewed as a set of gardening techniques, but it has in fact developed into a whole design philosophy, and for some people a philosophy for life. Its central theme is the creation of human systems which provide for human needs, but using many natural elements and drawing inspiration from natural ecosystems. Its goals and priorities coincide with what many people see as the core requirements for sustainability.”

Permaculture tackles how to grow food, build houses and create communities, and minimise environmental impact at the same time. Its principles are being constantly developed and refined by people throughout the world in very different climates and cultural circumstances.

Subscribe to Permaculture and become a part of a growing community of like-minded people and a positive key to the change we all wish to see being brought to this planet.

Lead photo: Wade Muggleton’s back garden has been designed using permaculture principles. He collects rainwater, uses vertical space for growing food to get the most out of his garden and incorporates a wide range of plants and varieties.

Useful articles

What is Permaculture? Ethics
What is Permaculture? Principles
What is Permaculture? Design
Redefining the Third Permaculture Ethic: Future Care

An exploration of the principles by Maddy Harland

1. Relative Location
2. Each Element Performs Many Functions
3. Each Important Function Is Supported By Many Elements
4. Efficient Energy Planning
5. Using Biological Resources
6. Energy Cycling
7. Small Scale Intensive Systems
8. Working With Not Against Natural Forces

New to permaculture? Not sure where to start?

Here are five must-reads:

Permaculture Magazine
Every issue is packed with inspiring stories and how-to articles. All subscriptions come with FREE digital access to every single past issue.
https://shop.permaculture.co.uk/permaculture-magazine.html

Permaculture Design – The ultimate guide to designing with permaculture. 
https://shop.permaculture.co.uk/permaculture-design-a-step-by-step-guide.html

The Earth Care Manual – A thorough manual to temperate permaculture, from and home and garden to community and farming. A tome of knowledge to take your time over. 
https://shop.permaculture.co.uk/the-earth-care-manual.html

People and Permaculture – The first dedicated book on peoplecare that explores how to use permaculture to restore personal, social and planetary well-being. 
https://shop.permaculture.co.uk/people-and-permaculture.html

The Minimalist Garden – Growing fruit and vegetables in a minimal and efficient way, minimises waste in time and resources, while improving yields.
https://shop.permaculture.co.uk/the-minimalist-gardener.html

Useful resources