PDC – Bending Oak Permaculture Farm

Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) Courses
Bending Oak Permaculture Farm, Youngstown, OH
2 Options to Choose From in 2021
June 12-19  -also-   Sept. 11-18
Limited to 16 Students at Each – Registration Opens Soon.

Click Here to see a full picture summary of a recent PDC course at Bending Oak

-Midwest Permaculture is guiding the design and implementation of this project
-Learn permaculture at a site in the early stages of development

This PDC Course consists of our Foundations of Permaculture Webinar Series  plus 8-very-full days on site

Our Annual PDC at Bending Oak Permaculture Farm
We began designing this site with our client, Bending Oak Farm, over 7 years ago in an effort to take this 25-acre site that had been clear-cut with much of its topsoil removed by the previous owner, into a sit that includes bounty, beauty and ecological regeneration. We are having a great time developing this site with our client and will enjoy sharing all of our lessons and progress with you at this PDC course.

This area was a mosquito-infested swamp created when the previous owner clear-cut the property in 2008. The pond and shipping-container barn are part of the early design stages of this permaculture reclamation project.

Bending Oak’s Vision:
Bending Oak Farm is an educational farm committed to our mission of showing people what is possible when looking to create a more sustainable world. Through classes, workshops, school tours, community programs and hands on experiences, we look to demonstrate attainable practices to better the lives of all people as we move to a sustainable culture.

Photo: An important part of this project is building for seven generations out as children play an integral part in it.  This mother/daughter “team” work together to learn about permaculture as Mom learns how to place beneficial woodchips around the property while her daughter learns how to walk on them.  Inlay: Bending Oak and Midwest Permaculture’s Becky Wilson (foreground with the daughter) are co-designing this project with Becky’s husband Bill. The large equipment in the back is owned and operated by a local contractor, husband/wife team. They excavated the Bending Oak ponds and installed our cistern system.

Learn First Hand how we Designed and implemented:

Growing Harvestable Veggies while Building the Orchard Topsoil Shipping Container Barn

4000 Gallon Rainwater Cistern with First Flush System

Pond  Design and ConstructionYou Will Also Learn About:
– Fruit and Nut Orchard Design and Planting
– How to Build Three Inches of Topsoil In Three Years
– Double-Deer Fencing
– Equipment and Tools Needed to Build a Permaculture Site
– Small Bridge and Pergola Design/Build
– Understandable and Clean Composting Toilet System
– Root Cellar Basics
– Creating and Maintaining Paths and Driveways
– How to Create Your Own Permaculture Design
…and much more.

Here is the design layout map for the full 25 acres.

“I gave this course an overall rating of 5 stars.  If I could go higher I would, you exceeded my expectation by a huge amount.”

“This course should be a requirement to living on the planet.”

“This was such a wonderful experience. I can’t imagine a better use of my time and money.  I’m leaving with clear ideas of how to implement permaculture into my life and inspired to do so.”

“I really enjoyed what Bill and his team brought to this course. Their vulnerability, honesty, experience, knowledge and integrity inspired us all week. Each day was an adventure in what is really possible.”

A Message from Bill…

Bill Wilson – Lead Teacher and Designer for Midwest Permaculture

When Bending Oak approached us 6 years ago to assist in the development of its property, none of us foresaw how our passion for this project would grow.

Taking a couple of key lessons from the Permaculture Designer’s Manual, Bending Oak, Becky and I decided to observe the property over time while simultaneously implementing some slow and steady solutions.

To be clear, we did not have all the answers before we started. We still don’t. But we advance confidently taking one step at a time, applying permaculture systems thinking and techniques, and learning much as we progress.

For all who attend this training we will share with you our step-by-step process including our design details.

This is going to be a wonderful course and I am very much looking forward to it. I hope to see you there…Bill Wilson

P.S. Along the way, a child even joined the Bending Oak Team and is now an important part of this project as we work to incorporate building this site for seven generations.

You may be wondering…
 “What will I be learning from this Permaculture Design Course?”
Click Below.

About the World Recognized Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) Course
How We Deliver this Amazing Course Material   (Regardless of the location)
Download our Curriculum Outline (.pdf)

Graduation Day in the Rain! – Bending Oak PDC 2018

Additional Details About the Course

Start and End Time
Start: Saturday, – 1:00pm
End:   Saturday, – Noon

Check-in and Registration is from 9:30-12:30 in the morning.  Course starts promptly at 1:00 p.m. A light lunch will be available around noon.
Once the course starts we will be full-on for the entire week so arrive on the early side, get setup  and relax a bit before this permaculture adventure begins.   (More details regarding being at the course will be sent to registered students closer to the training dates.)

Daily Schedule
7:15  –     Breakfast

8:15  –     Class
12:15 –     Lunch Break
2:00  –     Class
5:00  –     Dinner Break
7:00  –     Class 
9:00  –     End

As you can see, these are very-full days.  But because we break up the class-time with videos, exercises, discussions and more, students enjoy going into the evenings without feeling fatigued.

“Bill, I was concerned coming in that I would not be able to learn anything by the evening sessions.  Not so.  With the long meal breaks and the way that you and your team kept the material so interesting, I was fully engaged all day. Great job.  I didn’t want the week to end.”
Rebecca – 48 – Social Worker

Lodging, Camping and Meals
The price of registration includes plenty of free camping space on mowed grassy areas and all of your meals beginning with lunch on Saturday. We prepare our organic meals with many locally sourced foods and always have a vegetarian option. Are you vegan or gluten-free?  Just let Becky know and we’ll work with you.

Bring your own tent for free camping on our mowed grass. There are a couple of tent platforms available.

As part of the camping set-up there is a shower-house with clean composting toilets (a new system we have developed combining the elements from others) and plenty of hot and cold running water supplied from our rainwater harvesting system.

Rocket Stove Hot Water Heater Too
The shower house has an on-demand LP hot water heater but if we have time we’ll set up the wood-fired, hot-water stove and outdoor shower. We will be exploring rocket stove technology in detail at the course anyway and the unit below served us for our first PDC course in 2018. It really works.

Classroom Space
Classes will be held in the large open area of the shipping container barn where there is almost always a nice breeze (no air conditioning).  If you have a favorite lawn or folding chair you are invited to bring it.

A Solar-Energy ‘Lite’ Course
Since we will be running everything off of our 1.6KW solar panel system we will all have to be mindful of how much electricity we are consuming. When the sun is high and bright we will have plenty of energy. By evening however, we will need to conserve a bit.  As a back up, we have a gasoline-powered electric generator if/when it becomes necessary.

Group and Personal Design Projects
For all PDC trainings, students work on several design projects and usually in small groups. These design exercises are a requirement of certification. The projects selected will be determined by the instructors but student’s preferences are strongly considered.

Bring Your Own Design Project: If one of the reasons you are taking this training is to learn the skills necessary to create a permaculture design for your own home, business, farm or property, we invite you to bring information about your site to the training. If you have them, bring a sketch of your property in fairly accurate proportions and/or an aerial view photo or map.  We can look this information up online as well.  Also bring a plant list of what is on your property now (does not have to be exhaustive – what are the dominant species – place them on the sketch), note the sunny and shady parts of the property and what direction is south. You should also be as clear as you can be about what your current dreams or visions are for the property. There will be some time in the latter part of the course where these individual projects can be explored.

What to Pack & Other Details
About 4 weeks before the on-site training begins, students will receive more information concerning what to pack, when and where to arrive and other details. No big surprises here. Just the usual stuff.

Students who complete this design course will receive a ‘Certificate of Completion’ from Midwest Permaculture, which in the permaculture tradition, allows them to use the word ‘permaculture’ in the promotion of their work or business. Graduates may offer workshops, lectures and design services. Click here for more on certification.

Description of our Full, Permaculture-Design-Certification Courses
If you landed on this page and happened to have missed the full course description, you might still be wondering what is actually covered in a certification course. If so, Click Here.

“This was unequivocally the best educational experience of my life. You made permaculture completely understandable and I am so inspired to implement this work. This training has tied it all together for me. Thank You.”
Kate M. – College Student

“Thanks so much for all your work!! I was so inspired by the course. I’ve already integrated permaculture into a community project I’m working on. After 25 years of landscaping, I needed this boost of BLISS!”
Catherine R. – Professional Landscape Architect

You Can Begin The Training Now with the Pre-Course Studies 

This permaculture course actually begins with registration when you receive a welcome email with links to the webinar series which includes:
– 14 hours in our Foundations of Permaculture webinar series,
– links to over 3-dozen selected articles and resources
– 150 question study guide
– Our textbook, The Earth User’s Guide to Permaculture within a week following registration.

Fees and Registrationround final

Course Fee: $1500
Early Registration Price up to June 16th – $1350

Online Registration Coming Soon
Or call Becky at 815-256-2215

Our 2019 PDC Course Graduates.
We hope you can join us this year!

Continuing Support Following Graduation
Students who have completed a Midwest Permaculture design certification course (PDC) are then invited to become part of our growing network of graduates. There are three ways we work to support our graduates:

  • We have a separate website where all 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 certification courses at half price.

      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 offer a 33% discount to students who have already received their PDC Certification from another recognized teacher (from anywhere in the world) who wish to take one of our courses as a refresher. Please email us for details.

      Low Risk Cancellation and Refund Policy
      Should a student have to cancel their enrollment in the course up to 30-days before the on-site portion of the course begins, there is a full refund less $250. Student retains access to webinars, keeps the course handouts and text-book, and receives a full $195 credit towards any future Midwest Permaculture design certification course.

      If a student cancels within the 30-day period before the course there will be a full refund less $350 and the student still receives a $195 credit towards our design courses. The credit is good for up to three years.

      There are no refunds for cancellations or for withdrawals once the course begins. However, in certain circumstances, we may extend partial or full credit towards a future design course.

      Still Have Questions?
      You are welcome to email Becky (becky@midwestpermaculture.com) or call her at 815-256-2215.