Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) Course

The Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) Course

What Subjects are Covered in a (PDC) Course?

There is a lot of ground to cover in a PDC.  

Permaculture is about looking at ways to integrate many different elements into a sustainable way of living.  So, even though we might not go into great detail in every subject area (we would need three months) we do delve into many different subjects and look for those ways that they interrelate to each other.

The goal is design systems that allow us to live abundantly well, while also eliminating wastes, increasing yields, minimizing unnecessary work and caring for the total environment. We must design was of living that care for nature which ensures the necessary resources for future generations.

How Does
Midwest Permaculture Deliver this World Recognized Training?

Click Here for our
PDC Course Curriculum

  • Subjects Covered
  • Observations and Patterns
  • Principles and Ethics of Permaculture
  • Designing for Different Climatic Zones
  • Soils, Plants, and Trees
  • Guilds and Polycultures
  • Water and Earthworks
  • Utilizing Micro-climates
  • Designing with Succession in Mind
  • Eco-Building
  • Zone and Sector Analysis
  • Aquaculture
  • Planning the Homestead
  • Bio-Fuels
  • Economics
  • Urban and Suburban Permaculture
  • Garden Management
  • Small-Farm Strategies
  • Large-Farm Possibilities
  • International Implications
  • Starting your own Permaculture Business
  • More….

“I’m so glad we got into the details behind the concepts.   I now get the fundamentals and am confident in my own permaculture skills.  The combination of teaching styles and personalities was wonderful.
I loved this course. “

Trevor J. -20- Sustainable Ag student, MSU


Who Could Benefit from a Permaculture Design Certificate Course?
Since permaculture is about creating beneficial relationships in the total environment, we have students come to our design courses from a wide spectrum of experience and knowledge.  






Garden Designers

Farmers (small and large)

Elected Officials

Municipal, State, and Federal Staff and Managers 

Community Development Workers

Non-profit and Community Organizers/Administrators

Social Workers 


Landscape Architects


Resource managers



Construction Professionals

Real estate buyers and brokers



Religious Leaders

Local and Regional Planners

Green Entrepreneurs

“The information, design methods, networking, and even food were beyond my expectations.  Taking this course has re-ignited a fire in me that had been only embers.  There is hope for the human species.”

Ron N.—60; Landscape architect


Basic Permaculture Design Principles

Regardless of the subject area being explored, these fundamental permaculture design principles delineated by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren will be revisited regularly:

  • Each function is supported by multiple elements.
  • Catch, store & recycle energy and materials.
  • Use biological and renewable resources.
  • We can turn problems into solutions.
  • Mistakes are tools for learning.
  • Abundance is unlimited.
  • Observe & connect.
  • Accelerate succession.
  • Use small scale, intensive systems.
  • Use the edge effect to maximize yield.
  • Each element performs multiple functions.
  • Make the least change for the greatest effect.

“I just wanted to thank you for a wonderful week. I learned more than I expected to. I have been asked about giving some permaculture classes by our local community college in Cleveland. Thanks for the confidence you instilled in me!”

Sean K.-45, Homeowner with 2-Acres


A Focus on the Fundamentals
What is important to understand about a full-design-certification course is that all of the basic principles and ideas behind a permaculture approach or design must be covered to meet Mollison’s requirements for a certificate of completion.  Different climates, land types, soil types and living situations are explored. So, it doesn’t really matter where you live now or where you take a design course.  You should be exposed to all the fundamentals which will allow you to begin to create a permaculture design for just about any piece of property or location on the planet.  The fundamentals and the principles don’t change.  The education you receive from a PDC is universally applicable.


Continuing Support Following Graduation

Students who have completed a Midwest Permaculture design course are then invited to become part of our growing network of graduates. There are three ways we work to support our students: 

  • We have a separate website where all Midwest Permaculture graduates can connect, share ideas and look for some assistance from each other.
  • We host occasional permaculture reunions for our graduates and their families.
  • Graduates may audit any future 72-hour certificate course at half price (provided space is available).

Our objective is to support our students for as long as they need it or want it, and to encourage them to support each other.


Already A Permaculture Design Course Graduate?
We do offer a 33% discount to students who have graduated from any other recognized PDC course (from anywhere in the world) who wish to take a Midwest Permaculture course as a refresher.  The discount only applies if there are open slots in the intended course.  Please email for details.

See our Permaculture Design Certificate Course Schedule Here