Now that we have our course schedule finalized for 2022, we wanted to share a little highlight of what taking a Permaculture Design Certificate course with us is really like.
We believe there is much more to permaculture than what is in the designer’s manual. As its founders Bill Mollison and David Holmgren stressed, the initial concept of permaculture was meant to expand, and over the years there have been great strides in exploring what can be accomplished by designing human systems with the ethics of permaculture at the base of our intent. Continue reading “2022 Course Schedule is Released!”
Our First Cabin is Done – Completed 2020 We guided the design and construction of the first of several cabins on the CSC’s 8.7 acre design project. The cabins are part of a long-term sustainability plan for this land.
Building Raised Beds on Contour When our community pond became stagnant from silt runoff and the build-up of plant detritus over 40 years, it needed some serious rehabilitation and excavation. In 2018 we hired a contractor to help us with the job (a nearby friend and neighbor of the community) but what to do with all of the muck? Not knowing how much muck there would be we marked off two long contour lines in the field above the pond and had them dump truck-load after truck-load along side of our markers. The goal? To build raised beds on contour.
We recently visited a long-term project of ours, Bending Oak Permaculture farm in Youngstown, Ohio. We have been designing and implementing for this demonstrative site for over seven years, and to see it transform from a plot of barren land into an abundant, regenerative ecosystem has been incredibly rewarding.
To help share what we are creating and learning with others, we set up an 18-Stop Self-guided Tour with posters like this at each point.
Another Experiment at Midwest Permaculture How one can attractively store woody brush to give it time to break down.
Hello permaculture friends. We wanted to give something a try. We have not seen this exact design in the literature or on YouTube (although it certainly could be out there) but the idea is to use our yard brush while also building a sturdy fence. Continue reading “Living Woven-Willow Brush Fence”
Larry Korn 1948-2019 Free Webinar posted as a Tribute to Larry
We are saddened by the recent passing of our friend, Larry Korn. He is best known for being the translator/editor of one of the most influential books to touch the lives of scores of natural farmers and permaculturists, The One-Straw Revolution by Masanobu Fukuoka.
Why is this book so influential? The Middle East and Northern Africa were once very fertile areas. With widespread annual tilling/plowing, a civilization will always end up losing it’s topsoil and become arid. One-half of the topsoil has now be washed away on the North American continent. The One-Straw Revolution shows us how annual grain growing can be done without tillage so that we can grow food WHILE building topsoil!
The folks at Smart Farm in Barrington, IL, invited us to work with them on a permaculture design for a new 10-acre parcel they were gifted with.
The biggest challenge? This was the low ground in the area and after a good rain, 5 of the 10 acres was under water, including many of their annual gardening beds.
So we designed in some rain gardens and bioswales to move the water in the direction we wanted through the property. Once the deep rooted prairie plants are established we will actually end up holding more water on the land while also keeping their annual beds dryer. Here is the conceptual design. We’ll post the ‘as-built’ design once it’s completed.
It has been a real boon to have Embry Jansen and Sky Pisarski assisting us over the past couple of weeks as permaculture work-traders. They are trading their time for one of our upcoming PDC courses. They have been assisting us with a wide variety of unfinished activities related to our CSC 8.7-acre Permaculture Land Project here in Stelle.
Mowing a Swale and Berm System with a Ditch-Bank Flail Mower
Greetings… A common question we get is how to maintain the ‘weeds’ or growth on a swale and berm system. I thought this pictoral summary would be helpful to many of you. Let us know what you think and about what you have been doing as well. Cheers… Bill Wilson
Chronicle of a Work-Trade Program One scrappy idealist’s venture into the world of permaculture
“This permaculture summer of mine was magical for me in a lot of ways, and beginning my journey with the work-trade program was certainly a beautiful way to get started on that journey.” Coral
Perhaps you are an experienced permaculturalist and manage an amazing piece of land or you educate others in the ways of the swale. Or perhaps you have a PDC and are eager to learn more. Or maybe you’ve recently begun this journey and are looking at what Midwest Permaculture has to offer. A Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) is a good investment but it can be kind of expensive. If you’re a young 20-something like myself you may not be able to drop a thousand bucks for a week-long training. Fortunately, Midwest Permaculture provides another option: their work-trade program.