[permaculture] Permaculture in Houston

McFarlandAIA at aol.com McFarlandAIA at aol.com
Wed Sep 15 22:48:33 EDT 2004

To all,

It is in Austin that the Permaculture Designer Certification series is being 
currently offered on the weekends. There are also some weekend classes I have 
seen listed in Northern California. In the classes I took about 5 years ago, 
the Permaculture Guild of Houston offered the class in 10 Saturdays over 10 
months at a rural location - Animal Farm. We had hands-on experience, but little 
real powerpoint (slides) with handouts that we have now. We found that the 
Saturday courses were hard for people to commit to, so we switched to 2 
Wednesdays a month and kept the prices really low because Urban Harvest umbrellaed us 
into their hierarchy, the teachers were many and could teach after their day 
job and we intentionally wanted to keep the classes affordable. We feel that we 
are an urban area with specific urban problems and the classes are oriented 
towards urban solutions. We have been very fortunate to find a vast untapped 
reservoir of intentional students wanting this information and can share and 
nurture Permaculture in an urban setting. Our prime goal is to grow the group 
within Houston. We are not the best city for environmental sensitivities, but 
teaching Permaculture will make a difference, one student at a time. We graduate 
11 students this coming Sunday.

If anyone is interested in how we made this transition from an in-residence 
intensive class to a more fragmented allotment of core teaching modules which 
can transfered to any available teacher (assuming you have many), please let me 
know and I will share or post an article written by Dr. Bob Randall of Urban 
Harvest about the evolution of our group and its teaching approach.

Shawn McFarland, AIA, LEED
Permaculture Guild of Houston

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