When we think about having a lighter touch on the earth, what no doubt comes to mind at first thought is the likes of recycling, planting a few trees and maybe less fossil-fueled travel, especially in big aircraft heading overseas. However, if we are honest, we don’t know what to do beyond this to make a real difference. How do we lighten our impact on the earth, or even to go further, can we be regenerative, actually fostering life?

The inventor of Holistic Management, Alan Savory, says that it is only human management that has got us into the climate and environmental fix we are now experiencing. It is only human management that can get us out.

With this in mind, I must admit to being quite excited about this new offering we are hosting here at the Lodge – The River Valley Permaculture Design Certificate Course.

What is Permaculture?

“Permaculture is an approach firmly grounded in Ecology. It was developed to help us meet our need for air, water, food, fuel, comfort, and community while regenerating the earth’s life support systems. It is built on the understanding that it is not enough to simply reduce the harm we are doing to the ecosystems we live in. Instead, we need to actively rebuild ecological integrity into all aspects of human life.”

The River Valley Permaculture Design Certificate Course teaches design principles and allows potential permaculturists to get certified. The course covers:

  • Permaculture ethics, design principles and implementation
  • Organic growing methods (vegetable gardens, herbs, fruit, edible landscapes)
  • Site and climate analysis
  • Land management (soils, orchards, pastures, trees, water systems)
  • Integrated animal systems
  • Water harvesting & storage. Greywater & ‘waste’ recycling
  • Ecological building
  • Renewable energy systems and appropriate technology
  • Permaculture design for rural and suburban-large and small scale

The course includes both theory and practical elements.

Permaculture Design Course

I would say that many people in the past have been put off enrolling in these types of courses because of the perceived “hippy” or alternative living kind of connotations and a picture in their minds of such practices only being suitable for dreadlocked young people. However, the reality is this course is ideal for anybody who values using design in managing their property or footprint.

If you are any of the following, this course could be for you:

  • A Farm owner
  • A Lifestyle block owner
  • A Suburban section occupier or owner
  • Anyone interested in gaining new life skills
  • ‘Off Gridders’

The lead tutors for this course are very experienced and well-known permaculture teachers- Robina McCurdy and Guenther Andraschko. They have extensive experience in their fields and have worked in a wide range of countries and climatic conditions. Their teaching caters for a variety of learning styles and is inspiring, interactive, dynamic and fun.


The course starts on the 16th of October 2021 and finishes on the 31st of October 2021. Registrations are now open.

Sustainable living is slowly becoming a part of our lifestyles, and the earlier we adopt it, the better it is for us and the planet.


See you there.


Brian Megaw

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