[permaculture] David Holmgren in Argentina

Asociacion Gaia gaia at gaia.org.ar
Sat Jun 23 10:11:23 EDT 2007

Dear friends,
find atached information about David Holmgren´s Permaculture courses in 
thanks for spreading this information to like-minded people,
and for posting it in your web sites.

Warm regards,

Gustavo Ramírez
Instituto Argentino de Permacultura
Asociación GAIA
gaia at gaia.org.ar
gaia at lq.com.ar
Tel: (02272) 492072
Cel (02227) 15552554


visit Argentina:


>From August 24th to 27th 2007


 From 3 to 15 September 2007

Public Conferences and events
dates and places to be confirmed

Organized by


With David Holmgren*

>From August 24th to 27th 2007

Gaia Ecovillage, Navarro,  Buenos Aires

This is a fundamental course for those people willing to be part of the 
efficient solutions for the socio-environment crisis we are living. David 
Holmgren will share 30 years of permacultural thoughts and action giving a 
more evolutional vision of the principles which are the base of the 
permaculture design.

This Course it is aimed to provide more in depth understanding of 
fundamental permaculture concepts that have universal application.

Using a combination of free flowing lectures, visual presentations, case 
studies of his own work, structured group discussions and observations, 
David Holmgren breathes life into the design principles which link the 
diversity of permaculture solutions.

David will encourage group discussions during the course and will 
investigate together with the participants some of the main permaculture 

For permaculture designers wanting to expand and redesign their permaculture 
toolkit for new conditions and challenges, this course provides an update on 
the ongoing evolution of these permaculture principles and their 
For those participants new to permaculture but with grounding in 
sustainability concepts and strategies, this course provides access to 
foundational understandings necessary to make sense of permaculture 
strategies and priorities.

This will be a great opportunity as well, to learn how David applies his 
ideas in real situations as Melliodora and several other projects he has 
designed and continues developing.

The 4 days residential course format allows participants to share daily life 
in an Ecovillage, as well as sharing different moments and informal talks 
with David Holmgren and Su Dennett.


·         Actualization of Permaculture principles adapted to the crisis of 
the planet.

·         Permaculture Solutions for the Energy Descent Future

·         Design - Landscape reading, permaculture site design, strength and 
weakness. Landscape Planning strategies and design process. Examples of the 
use of a land for a complete planning of a permacultural farm.

·         Presentation of his projects and designs: Melliodora and Fryers 

·         Energy descent scenarios

Prerequisite: Permaculture Design Course, and/or substantial experience and 
knowledge of sustainability issues and/or practices.


With David Holmgren*,
Gustavo Ramirez, and guest teachers
>From 3 to 15 September 2007

Gaia Ecovillage, Navarro,  Buenos Aires

 "Permaculture is about values and visions, designs and systems of 
management that are based on holistic understanding especially on our 
bio-ecological and psychosocial knowledge and wisdom. It is particularly 
about our relationship with, and the design and redesign of, natural 
resource management systems, so that they may support the health and 
well-being of all present and future generations" David Holmgren

The word permaculture was coined by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren in the 
mid-1970s to describe   integrated consciously designed landscapes which 
mimic the patterns and relationships found in nature, while yielding an 
abundance of food, fiber and energy for provision of local needs. People, 
their buildings and the ways they organise themselves are central to 

The permaculture draws together the diverse ideas, skills and ways of living 
which need to be rediscovered and developed in order to empower us to move 
from being dependant consumers to becoming responsible and productive 

In this more limited but important sense permaculture is not the landscape 
or even the skills of organic gardening, sustainable farming, energy 
efficient building or Ecovillage development as such.  But it can be used to 
design, establish, manage and improve these and all other efforts made by 
individuals, households and communities towards a sustainable future.

Historically, permaculture has focused on land and nature stewardship as 
both a source for and an application of ethical and design principles. Those 
principles are now being applied to other domains dealing with physical and 
energetic resources as well as human organisation, often called invisible 
structures in permaculture teachings.

Permaculture is also a network of individuals and groups spreading 
permaculture design solutions in both rich and poor countries on all 
continents. Largely unrecognized in academia and unsupported by government 
or business, permaculture activist are contributing to a more sustainable 
future by reorganising their lives and work around permaculture design 
principles. In this way they are creating small local changes, but ones that 
are directly and indirectly influencing action in the fields of sustainable 
development, natural agriculture, appropriate technology and intentional 
community design for a more

sustainable world.

In many countries, only the relatively small numbers of people who have done 
Permaculture Design Courses, or been closely associated with permaculture 
projects, are familiar with the concept. In Australia, however, a longer 
history of permaculture activism and influence within large related 
environmental movements, as well as extensive media exposure, has resulted 
in broader public appreciation of permaculture.

After 26 years permaculture may rank as one of Australia's most significant 
"intellectual exports".

Most of the people involved in this network have completed the Permaculture 
Design Course (PDC) which for 23 years has been the prime vehicle for 
permaculture inspiration and training worldwide. The inspirational aspect of 
PDC has acted as a social glue bonding participant to an extent that the 
world-wide network could be described as a social movement. A curriculum was 
codified in 1984 but divergent evolution of both the form and content of 
these courses, as presented by different permaculture teachers, has produced 
very varied and localized experiences and understandings of permaculture.

The course will have a good balance between theory and practice. Trough 
theory presentations, audiovisual material, group discussions, deep 
observation and design practice, the participants will acquire basic skills 
and knowledge to design and implement sustainable systems in harmony with 
natural world.

During part of the course in small groups the participants will create a 
permaculture design exercise at site, using their new skills.

This course covers the 72hs of the international permaculture curriculum. It 
has also been amplified to 90hs to include David Homgren´s new principles 
and proposals, and adapted to the Latin-American reality as well.


GLOBAL CRISIS - analysis of the cultural, social and ecological evidences. 
Climate change impact. Peak oil, strategies for the new post oil society. 
Searching for solutions within the change of paradigms. Holistic vision of 
the world as first step for planetary healing

PERMACULTURE PRINCIPLES AND ETHICS - evolution of permaculture' ethics, 
synthesis and cultural renewal. Roots of permaculture knowledge, connection 
between science and spirituality

ECOSYSTEM -Listening and reconnecting with nature. Ecosystem principles. The 
natural systems, energy and entropy. Energy cycles and flows. Climate and 
biogeography applied to permaculture. Conservation, diversity, cooperation, 
niche and ecological succession applied to design. The forest as an organism 
and its hydrologic cycle. Deep analysis of the landscape. Natural patterns.

DESIGN - detailed analysis and application of permaculture design 
principles. Steps to the development of integrated ecological designs. 
Problems to be solved. Key elements for a good design. The process of 
analysis and planning the place, distribution of the land to optimize its 
use. Several tools for the designer. Methods and steps for the presentation 
of a good design. Designs for small and large scale. Site and Landscape 
design methods

WATER in the surroundings. Water movements. Accumulation and purification. 
Water management, ponds, dams, lakes. Aquaculture. Water treatment and 

SOIL - Building a healthy soil. Bases of soil structure, PH, texture, etc. 
strategy for improving soil using cover crops, mulch, etc. Erosion control. 
Ethylene cycle and consequences of its alteration. Conditions of soil in 
tropics and templates climates.

NATURAL AGRICULTURE -Establishing a permaculture agro-eco-system. Masanobu 
Fukuoka principles. Forest garden concept. Bases for selecting, developing 
and maintaining these systems. Ecological pest management's strategies. Low 
cost greenhouse design and maintenance. Seed production and care. Tree 
plantation with low use of energy. Ecology of the forest, trees for 
firewood, for timber, etc. Animals and their function in the ecosystem, 
efficient use and maintenance of them.

NATURAL BUILDING - Shelter as a living organism and the relation with the 
environment. Bases for natural building, use of natural patterns. Design for 
an efficient use of energy. Non toxic materials.

APROPIATE TECHNOLOGY - Bases for technology selection. Conscious and 
efficient use of energy. Compost toilet. Grey water treatment systems. 
Masonry mud stoves and ovens. Solar cookers. Alternative energy, wind 
generators and photovoltaic.

URBAN PERMACULTURE - Different strategies and examples. Community gardens, 
CSA, Local currencies,

SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES - Bases for community design, appropriate scale for 
sustainability. Language patterns for human settlements. Selecting land 
criteria. Infrastructure needs regarding community and individual spaces. 
Ecovillage life components. Bases for conflict resolution and decision 
Human scale economy. Permaculture productive systems development.
Local economy development and ethical basis for complementary currency.

*David Holmgren was born in Fremantle, Western Australia, in 1955. As a 
child of

working class political activists, he was greatly influenced by the social 
revolution of the late 60s and early 70s. While traveling around Australia 
in 1973 he fell in love with the Tasmanian landscape and joined the 
innovative Environmental Design School in Hobart. An intense working 
relationship with his mentor Bill Mollison, over the following three years, 
led to the permaculture concept and set the course of his later life. As the 
young co-author of Permaculture One in 1978, David shunned the limelight and 
focused on further developing his practical and design skills for a 
self-reliant lifestyle.

Since then he has written many other books, developed several properties 
using permaculture principles, conducted workshops and courses in Australia, 
New Zealand, Israel and Europe. For the last 27 years he has lived and 
worked in Hepburn Springs, central Victoria. As a consultant designer he has 
developed a great expertise to the temperate landscapes of south-eastern 
Australia with a strong bioregional focus on his home territory. With his 
partner Su Dennet and their son Oliver he maintains his property Melliodora 
as one of the Australia's best known permaculture demonstration sites. Over 
the last 12 years he has been a driving force in the design and development 
of the Fryer's Forest Ecovillage. Within the international permaculture 
movement, David is respected for his commitment to presenting permaculture 
ideas through practical projects. He teaches by personal example that a 
sustainable lifestyle is a realistic, attractive and powerful alternative to 
dependant consumerism.

As well as his constant involvement in the practical side of permaculture, 
David is passionate about the philosophical and conceptual foundations for 
sustainability, the focus of his seminal book "Permaculture, Principles and 
Pathways Beyond Sustainability"

Gustavo Ramirez, graduated as a veterinarian in 1983, since then he has 
participated in several wildlife projects and development of agro-ecological 

He got interested in the health of the planet as a whole and started working 
towards the protection of two wild areas near Buenos Aires City. Whilst 
working there he created and developed an environmental education program 
based on the deep connection with nature.

With Permaculture he found the synthesis of many areas in which he has been 
working separately, which has opened new paths in his work with nature. He 
received his initial training in Permaculture Design Course with Max 
Lindegger in 1996, and has continue his training on Permaculture Advanced 
Courses but mainly applying his knowledge in permaculture practice. He has 
received his Permaculture Diploma by the Italian Academy of Permaculture. He 
has a great experience in natural building. One of his passions is Natural 
Agriculture based on Masanobu Fukuoka principles. He has offered several 
courses among which the Permaculture Design Courses are the most outstanding 
where 260 people from 35 countries have been graduated during the last 10 
He is also a Permaculture consultant.
He is founder member of Gaia Association. He has lived in Gaia Ecovillage 
project for 11 years, and has played a leading role in the general design of 
the site. He has created and coordinates Instituto Argentino de 
Permacultura. He is also an active member since the creation of GEN (Global 
Ecovillage Network) and ENA (Ecovillage Network of Americas)

One of his main interests at the moment is the adaptation of Permaculture 
systems to the Latin-American reality, and the inclusion of art, native 
flora, and popular knowledge to his designs.

The site
Gaia Ecovillage Project is located in Navarro 110km. southwest of Buenos 
Aires City, on the Argentine pampas. Built as a milk-processing plant 50 
years ago, Gaia has been extensively rehabilitated as a Living and Learning 
Center, with sleeping facilities, classrooms, library, community Center, 
etc. Power at Gaia is generated by wind turbines, and good examples of 
reforestation, forest garden, natural building, appropriate
technology, waste water treatment, composting toilets, solar showers, solar
ovens and several sustainable systems in different stage of development may 
be seen at the site. All of this in the context of a small pioneer
community in evolving process.
Gaia hosts the regional office of ENA (Ecovillage Network of the Americas), 
and the Argentine Permaculture Institute (IAP), as a space for
experimenting, implementing and teaching Permaculture systems. It offers an 
updated library covering a wide range of topics based on sustainability, as 
well as interesting videos (most in english).


 Vacancies are limited. If you are interested, please send your application 
form, and once you are accepted, you can send a deposit of 30% to confirm 
your place on the course. The deposit is non-refundable unless your program 
is fully booked or cancelled. You can pay the balance of your fee at your 
arrival, before the start of the course.

The proposal is to live in the site during the entire course. The lodge is 
in shared rooms, and the meals are vegetarian

The cost for the Advanced course is us$450, include accommodation and 
vegetarian meals.
The cost for the PDC is us$1050, include accommodation and vegetarian meals.
There are some scholarships available for local participants.

There will be translation Spanish - English available

Asociación GAIA - Argentine Permaculture Institute
www.gaia.org.ar / Email: gaia at gaia.org.ar
Postal Address: Almafuerte 1732 - San Martin -
(1650) Buenos Aires - Argentina
Phone (+54-2272) 492072
 Celular (+54-2227) 15552554
Fax (+54-11) 47522197

More information about the permaculture mailing list