Practice permaculture each week at our ‘village campfire’ of ongoing interactive group calls.
Next call series begins January 5, 2021!
Hosted by experienced permaculture mentors including Santa Cruz Permaculture founder David Shaw, Lydia Neilsen of Rehydrate the Earth, and John Valenzuela of Cornucopia Food Forests.
We’ve found that people thrive when practicing permaculture from within a supportive community container. This ‘village’ based learning is at the heart of our ethos at Santa Cruz Permaculture. The village provides a place for sharing and catching each other’s stories, forming connections and deep friendships, making commitments and accountability loops about what matters, and learning about the mysteries of nature and culture.
We will build and co-evolve our learning village through the process of weekly community calls and our interactive website (call participants gain free access to the website during the call series). For the village-builders, or those culturally creative folks who want to develop community in their own neighborhood and bioregion, we will also provide the opportunity to build bioregional community in the place you live should that be a desire of yours.
The goal of this program is to create thriving and resilient individuals and communities. We do this through supporting people to connect with nature, community, and themselves more deeply, and use permaculture as the vehicle for doing so.
Each call includes a keynote talk on a relevant and seasonal topic. This is followed by a small group conversation for reflection, and a whole group conversation and Q+A. We close the calls with invitations for how you can apply what you’ve learned in your home and community. The next call begins with a check in about how it went applying what you learned.
Our curriculum is ever evolving, changing with the seasons, and influenced by the topics people want to cover. It is dialogical and co-creative. We include and also transcend the topics covered in our permaculture design course, listed here just to get the flavor of typical topics. For example, during a 10-week cohort we may spend two weeks on composting (home or commercial), two weeks on no-till agroecology and food forests, a week on habitat and pollinators, a week on designing disaster resilience (personal and neighborhood), a week on economics and right livelihood, and a week on policies to support ecological living. Overall, our goal is to help you and your community thrive using a community based approach to permaculture as the means.
Winter Cohort Topics
Winter Pruning & Gathering Scion Wood: Winter pruning is an essential skill for the fruit tree grower, leading to more effective tree growth and fruit production. Plus, the pruned branches that fall to the ground are useful scion wood that can be shared and traded.
Grafting: Learn how to graft fruit tree scions onto rootstock so you can choose the varieties you want and start or expand your own food forest at home.
Observing Water: Where does water flow during rain events on your landscape? Learn about the importance of observation in permaculture design and explore methods for passive water retention in the landscape.
Greenhouses: Winter is the time to start seeds in your greenhouse for spring planting. You can also grow heat-loving plants in your greenhouse, such as tropical fruits and flowers.
Composting: We’ll explore various home composting systems (including worm composting!) so that you can turn food scraps and organic materials into black gold for your permaculture garden. If you already have a compost system in place, we can troubleshoot any issues you may be facing and identify ways to improve it.
And More! We hope you can join us!
What is Permaculture?
Permaculture is an ethically based whole-systems design approach that uses concepts, principles, and methods derived from ecosystems, nature connected communities, and other time-tested systems to create human settlements and institutions. It’s also been called “saving the planet while throwing a better party.” Click here for more.
Why ‘Mentoring’ ?
Our process of mentoring is a long term commitment whereby both parties care about the positive outcome of the other and are self-aware that they are each learning from the process. In that sense it is always ‘co-mentoring’ and reciprocal.
For the most part practicing permaculture is a deep, slow, and steady process. To be sure there are times when things move quickly, like when the food must come in or the fire be put out, though we’ve found that the best permaculture practitioners and sites are made through an ongoing and iterative process of think-trial-reflect-do. Mentoring works best when focusing on what really matters in a person’s life, and this takes time.
Being immersed in a mentoring village of fellow practitioners provides greater surface area for storytelling, learning, feedback, exchanging plants and farm products, mutual aid, and so much more. The power of community cannot be overstated for human development and learning. In particular, intergenerational collaboration offers us the opportunity for greater wholeness and community in today’s fragmented world through maximizing the unique gifts of each generation. By creating a mentoring village together we not only each benefit individually from the wellspring or connections but also serve the greater good by building something powerful, durable, agile and resilient.
The weekly calls are hosted by Santa Cruz Permaculture founder David Shaw. Guest instructors shift each cohort but frequently include Lydia Neilsen, John Valenzuela, Paula Grainger, and others. Learn more about our team of instructors here.
Our weekly calls are Tuesdays at 7:00-8:30 PM Pacific.
We align our calls with the seasons using a 10-week cohort model:
Fall 2020: October 6 to December 8
Winter 2021: January 5 to March 9
Spring 2021: March 30 to June 1
Summer 2021: July 13 to September 14
Free Open House Call
We offered a free “Open House” call on Tuesday, September 22 on “Design for Mitigating Disaster.” Watch the recording of the free call here.
Consider the disasters that are most likely to affect your home community. Whether your home is susceptible to wildfire, earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, or hurricanes, we all know we should be prepared. But what does effective preparation look like and how can permaculture design help us to think beyond our individual household emergency kits? How can we design and prepare our landscapes and neighborhoods to mitigate disaster? Join us for this free 1.5 hour call to learn more, engage in discussion, and begin to create a plan for your home, landscape, and neighborhood.
These are setup as ongoing subscriptions that you can cancel before beginning the next cohort. Participants receive a subscription to our interactive community website for the duration of their subscription, and recordings of the calls.
Super Early Bird Discount. $20 per call, $200 for the series. Sign up by November 15.
Early Bird Discount. $22.50 per call, $225 for the series. Sign up by December 15.
General. $25 per call, $250 for the series. Sign up by January 5.