[permaculture] Landscape architecture and permaculture design, differences, how to merge, where does one end and the other begin.
jstorvick at gmail.com
Thu Aug 12 13:55:01 EDT 2010
This is a topic that has been on my mind for some time now. Taking the PDC
course was a life-changing event for me that was a catalyst for further
educational forays. At this point, I am back in college working towards my
A.A.S. in Horticulture Technology - Landscape Design Specialization. It has
been an interesting experience comparing and contrasting methods and
approaches between permaculture and landscape design, and I agree - while
there is considerable overlap, there is much that can and needs to be
reconciled between the two.
Perhaps the primary difference between the two is the focus on either
function (usefulness to humans, edible plants, whole systems design etc.)
with permaculture, and form (aesthetics, ornamentalism, subordination to
architectural forms) with landscape design. This is not to say that
permaculture gardens aren't beautiful, or that traditional landscapes never
contain functional or edible systems, but the primary focus is different.
My own goal is to run a company that does design/build of edible landscapes
using permaculture methods and philosophy, while amping the aesthetic value
and utilizing the technical skills I'm learning while studying traditional
landscape design, sort of a mishmash between Mollison/Holmgren-style
permaculture, edible forest gardening a la Jacke & Toensmeier, the Creasy &
Kourik school of edible landscaping, and traditional garden design.
On a side note - I feel like I hear way too often about "permaculture demo
sites" that seem to exist mostly in people's imaginations, and way too
little about what folks are doing on the ground on their own land for their
own benefit. I'm sure that having demo sites is wonderful for introducing
people to permaculture concepts, but I figure the best "demo" one can offer
is a functioning system that is in place and directly benefiting those
on-site. Live by example, right? I'd rather eke out a decent living
designing permaculture landscapes for people who are going to be eating from
the trees I plant, than make a ton of money putting together a big
demonstration site on a wealthy client's "see how eco-friendly I am"
property that won't be used on a regular basis.
On Thu, Aug 12, 2010 at 1:25 PM, Lawrence F. London, Jr. <
venaurafarm at bellsouth.net> wrote:
> Just a few initial thoughts to try and start a new discussion thread:
> It would be worth using the best of both disciplines, especially for those
> who offer any kind of landscaping services, where does landscape
> architecture and related subfields end and permaculture begin or vice versa
> or how to combine the best of both to practice permaculture and
> eco-landscape architecture to the max. The disciplines are very different in
> obvious ways, i.e. certified, bondable industrial landscape plans and on the
> other hand permaculture designs to implement that work as well as their
> landscape counterpart in every way, especially being aesthetically pleasing
> and spiritually rewarding (Japanese landscapes, post-Colonial and Country
> Life Movement English cottage gardens).
> For those offering services and are looking for substantial jobs for
> clients who can afford them I would imagine there would be as many
> customers for permaculture site design and implementation as there would be
> for landscape design and installation. I hear from many permaculturists
> getting involved in the consultation and design field
> that they have found many wealthy clients who invest in raw land and want
> to turn it into a permaculture demo site. The key phrase there is
> "permaculture demonstration site".
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