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We get asked all sorts of questions about our classes, what permaculture is, and our approach. Since we teach and live permaculture holistically (and not solely as landscape design), we’ve pulled together some of our most frequently asked questions to help you decide whether permaculture (and one of our classes) is the right fit for you.

Permaculture is an ethical holistic design system that encourages least harm and highest benefit for people and ecosystems. Using permaculture principles and concepts, we can be proactive in our actions and create resilience to hardship. Permaculture as a whole incorporates natural life cycles, multi-functionality, diversity, and appropriate technologies. We can begin to mitigate the climate crisis on an immediate level as well as learn to live as lightly as possible on the earth.

But that’s not all! Permaculture is interested not just in sustainability but creating regenerative structures that positively impact our societies on social, economic, and environmental levels. You can use permaculture in any type of ecosystem but it’s primarily an umbrella term closely related to ecology, agro-ecology, re-wilding, food forests, reverse desertification, land restoration, appropriate technology, animal husbandry, addressing symptoms of extreme climate events, carbon sequestration, homesteading, and small-scale farming. This is why you can find permaculture courses that incorporate a variety of practical and theoretical skills.

Our permaculture classes always include a heavy dose of social permaculture. Permaculture teaches us to deeply accept what is and to be in relationship with life. It teaches us that tiny seeds can grow into the mightiest of trees and that we can plant those seeds both physically and metaphorically. This gives us the tools to be be proactive in co-creating high yielding, ethical, regenerative systems – within your garden, relationship, business, and/or life ecosystem.

The PDC is a design certificate so though we use the land as a tangible example, you’ll be able to apply your design knowledge to non-physical structures as well: your life, work, relationship, etc. We certainly discuss gardens and food, soil and climate, but we also address social structures, communication, and inter-reliance between elements of any given ecosystem. Our PDC follows the curriculum laid out by the Permaculture Institute of North America (PINA) and we’ve added components to the curriculum that benefit our students. At the end of the course, you’ll receive a Permaculture Design Certificate. You can find more info on what’s included in the PDC here.

We added the gardening series to complement the design class. Not a certificate program, this series is far more hands-on and it’s perfect for those who want to get their hands dirty while also learning about ecological options and permaculture concepts. Explore the various topics in our Eco-Gardening Series here.

We’re right in the middle of Southwestern Ontario. You can check out our contact page for a map or Google Map : Three Acre Permaculture and we’ll pop right up.

For a handy gauge, here are some distance to major centres:

  • London, 1 hour
  • Toronto, 2.5-3 hours
  • Guelph, 2 hours
  • Chatham, 40 minutes
  • Sarnia, 1 hour
  • Hamilton, 2 hours
  • Windsor, 1.5 hours
  • Detroit, MI, 2-2.5 hours (depending on the border run)

We’ve also had students come from Markham, Richmond Hill, and Peterborough. We occasionally teach a 2-week program in the Bruce Peninsula and usually teach every August in Hamilton/Ancaster.

All our courses are offered at a sliding scale rate. We choose sliding scale pricing as an attempt to level the playing field between differing incomes and systemic income inequality.

We understand that sometimes it’s hard to choose which level of sliding scale but ultimately, we trust that people who are of a higher income will choose to pay a higher tier so that those who have less access to equity can participate through our lower tiers.

If you’re still unsure which tier to choose, a good gauge is to consider is this:

  • if you own your home or can pay market-value rent, have access to capital in times of need, or can afford to treat yourself for an occasional splurge, choose the higher end of the sliding scale structure
  • if you’re supporting yourself and/or your family on minimum wage, are eligible for public assistance, or are work insecure, choose the lower end of the scale

Regardless of which level you choose, know that you can do so with no questions asked. If you’re still unsure, reach out.

Permaculture encourages us to accept what life is giving us and to design forward with intention and within an ethical framework. It gives us a way of seeing solutions and opportunities inside challenges.

Since you can apply permaculture principles to any ecosystem – including land-based as well as non-physical structures – permaculture offers insight into how to plan for contingencies, how to mitigate crisis, and how to deal when life (or big weather) happens.

The plethora of online courses and near unlimited access to knowledge is a beautiful thing. It’s become easier to learn from favourite teachers across the globe.

That said, online learning is incomparable to a real time class environment. In-person learning gives us a practice space, live time answers to your questions, explorations based on your circumstances, interaction with others, and an opportunity to build a stronger, local permaculture community.

We also like to give room in our courses for unique and personal learning styles which means we combine conceptual information, visual aids, discussion, personal application, and hands-on learning to deepen integration.

It’s not a class streamed from your living room but you’re welcome to wear your comfy clothes.

This is a great question! We go through both our PDC curriculum and our Eco-Gardening topics on the corresponding pages.

What we’d like to add is that the PDC offers a chance to design your life and gardens outside your day-to-day. You’ll learn how to design for your unique circumstances and desires. You’ll gift yourself the opportunity of objectivity, structure, permission, and creative solution.

Our Eco-Gardening Series gives you time to learn new techniques, practice old ones side-by-side with an expert, cultivate hands-on skills, and ask questions in real time.

Both give you the opportunity to be with other people who are also interested in a different way of living. And that, as they say, is priceless.

Immediately no. Permaculture is a design system which means, you can apply the principles and techniques to properties of any size. BUT ALSO, you can use your new permaculture skills in any ecosystem: your home, your relationships, your body, your business, your community, and more.

We use the land as a mechanism for learning but once you’ve got the concepts, you can take permaculture with you wherever you go (no matter the size of your property). Fun fact: Helen uses permaculture principles with her clients all the time as a business coach and mentor.

Explore Our Programs!