[permaculture] Permaculture in Central America bike tour

christopher nesbitt christopher.nesbitt at mmrfbz.org
Mon Apr 16 13:37:22 EDT 2012

Hi Marie,

There used to be a place in Guatemala called IMAP, or Instituto Mesoamericano de Permacultura. I have not heard much about them in recent years. They are on Lake Atitlan. 
IMAP - Permacultura America Latina There is info on that domain for other sites, so www.permacultura.org is a good place to find new information about other Latin American permaculture projects.

In Nicaragua, there is Project Bonafide, which is on Omatepe Island. I have never been there, but we have had interns who have been there, and it sounds like they are doing good things. That is the work of Christopher Shanks. www.projectbonafide.com

In Peru there is a place called Paititi Institute, close to Iquitos. They have a very interesting piece of land, and are involved in medicinal plant research. Cynthia and Roman are the founders and they are very nice people. www.paititi-institute.org

In southern Belize, close to the Maya ruins of Lubantuun, and near the village of San Pedro Columbia, we run a small NGO and farm called Maya Mountain Research Farm. It was founded in 1988, and is the oldest ongoing permaculture project in Central America. We are located in the foothills of the Maya Mountains, and work with the communities adjacent to the Maya Mountains. We are focused, especially, on the intersection between agriculture and ecology. We presently have about 20 acres under active management, mostly in agroforestry, with cacao and coffee as anchor crops. While we are focused in agriculture, we also do renewable energy stuff, including photovoltaic systems for village schools, and photovoltaic water systems for communities off the grid. Most of the places we work in are indigenous Kekchi Maya or Mopan Maya, but we work in non-indigenous communities as well. Primarily, we are a working farm. www.mmrfbz.org and www.facebook.com/MayaMountainResearchFarm can tell you a bit of what we do. 

If you are interested in visiting us, we are near Punta Gorda, in southern Belize, send me an email off list. We would love to have you visit.

Best wishes,


On Apr 15, 2012, at 10:32 AM, Marie Walker wrote:

> Hola!
> My name is Marie and I have been subscribed to the permaculture mailing 
> list for one year. Last year I lived in Detroit, Michigan, supporting 
> the urban farming movement by helping the local farms in the city of 
> Detroit- in the garden and buying local produce. I was enrolled in two 
> permaculture courses taught and hosted by Killian O' Brian, Larry 
> Santoyo and Keith Johnson. I also assisted in the construction of roof 
> thatching with harvested phragmites reeds at Deanne Bednar's Strawbale 
> Studio. The year I lived in Detroit, I fell in love with the 
> Permaculture vision, learning and integrating the concepts into my 
> everyday habits.
> Since November 2011, I said goodbye to America to tour Latin America by 
> way of riding my bicycle. My plan is to ride as far as Patagonia. I 
> crossed the border of Nogales, Mexico and rode though Mexico 4,000 
> kilometers. Currently, I am in San Cristobal de las Casas, weeks away 
> from entering Guatemala. I just began to travel with my partner, Piem, 
> who is expert in music signal processing and is involved in the Debian 
> project. He is equipped with high definition video cameras and we will 
> be filming more, creating small videos about what we are doing.
> My inquiry is: would anyone recommend me Central American (even South 
> American) permaculture recourses? I would be interested to visit 
> projects supporting indigenous cultures, environment protection,  
> natural construction, and organic farming- anything and everything to do 
> with permaculture. More so, I want to share these experiences and 
> learning opportunities with my blog followers and facebook friends. I 
> try to take every opportunity to share these holistic concepts with 
> everyone, in hopes that others will be inspired, as I have been.
> I want to add that I am not looking to enroll in a PDC. But if you have 
> information related to this, I am open to it.
> My blog is: thelongdistancetruth.wordpress.com.
> My email is thelongdistancetruth at gmail.com
> Piem's blog is: m.piem.org
> Muchas gracias!
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Christopher Nesbitt

Maya Mountain Research Farm
San Pedro Columbia, Toledo
PO 153 Punta Gorda Town, Toledo
Central America


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