2021 Fall Permaculture Design Course

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Hundred Fruit Farm

1744 Holicong Road

New Hope, PA 18938

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Event description
Come join us for our annual permaculture design course (PDC), originally planned for this winter/spring but rescheduled now for autumn 2021!

About this Event

**Important Information about Covid-19**

We had originally published this course for February to May of 2021, but were forced to cancel that course due to covid-19 pandemic and hold our annual permaculture design course this autumn instead. We will now be hosting this course from late August to early November 2021.

It still is quite possible that the autumn course may have to be canceled as well, but we are hopeful that vaccine distribution will be high enough across the wider population in the US by then to allow in-person courses like this to be conducted safely. That being said, unless the pandemic is essentially over by the start of the course, we will still be taking the following covid-19 precautions:

  • We will be requiring all students to wear a mask while in the classroom or while indoors, and masks will only be permitted to be removed if we are doing outdoor sessions in which everyone can be safely spaced far enough apart. Anyone who refuses to wear their mask properly will be asked to leave the course. 
  • We will be asking that everyone maintains social distance as much as possible. But because the classroom area is limited in size to the point that seating everyone six feet apart will likely not be possible, wearing masks will be mandatory to ensure everyone's safety.
  • We usually have a potluck in the course, but because of the pandemic, we will be following CDC guidelines to not share any food for the course and ask that everyone brings their own lunch each day.
  • We will have hand sanitizer available at all times and will disinfect the classroom area each day. 

Course Details

Come join us for our annual Winter/Spring permaculture design course! The permaculture design course, or PDC, is an intensive 72-hour internationally recognized permaculture certification. It's designed to give participants the inspiration and knowledge they need to make a positive change in the world, needed now more than ever. It will give you the skills necessary to design your home/yard/landscape into an ecologically-resilient edible system, and for some, it could be the first stepping stone to a permaculture career in design, education, consulting, or regenerative farming.

This course will be offered as a weekend course designed for local residents who don't have time to take an intensive (and expensive) two-week PDC. This course will be mostly classroom-based but will also include hands-on components. It will go through the basics of permaculture design relating to different climates, energy, natural building, the global climate, social systems, and more. The course curriculum includes:

- how permaculture started and what it means

- philosophies and ethics of permaculture

- permaculture design principles and how to apply them

- methods of design and how to apply design strategies

- how to mimic natural systems to create better design

- climatic factors and strategies, covering all major climates

- trees, forests, and forest gardening

- how to grow a wide range of easy to care for and disease-resistant fruits

- water: conserving, collecting, reusing in your design

- soil: learn the basics of soil chemistry and biology and how to work with the soil food web to build new soils and repair degraded land

- earthworks: shaping the land to maximize the benefits of your natural resources

- ecological sanitation systems: turning waste into a valuable resource

- aquaculture and aquaponics

- animal systems: the importance of animals in food systems and the symbiotic relationship between plants and animals

- natural building: how to build beautiful, inexpensive, resilient structures using available natural resources

- appropriate technology: home-scale biogas, solar cookers, rocket stoves, etc.

- alternative systems: alternative economic systems, food sovereignty, community living

- permaculture as a tool for sustainable development: using permaculture where it's needed most in underdeveloped countries lacking basic sanitation and infrastructure

The final part of the course will focus on co-creating a viable real-world design for a site that could include gardens, fruit trees, greywater systems, rainwater catchment, food forests, natural building projects, and more. Participants will have the opportunity to design their own site or a site affiliated with a project they are involved in as part of this final design project.​

Course Format & Online Option

Classes will be held in person on Saturday and Sunday on alternating weekends from 9 am to 5 pm over a 12 week period at Hundred Fruit Farm in Buckingham, PA, for a total of six weekends with classes. The exact weekends the course will take place on will be announced later this fall. Students are expected to eat breakfast and dinner before and after class. Normally, lunches are done potluck style, but as a precaution due to the pandemic, we are asking everyone to bring their own lunch each day for this course. We will supply hot water, tea bags, and coffee but will be encouraging everyone to bring and use their own cups throughout the course. 


The cost of the course is $650 per person for early bird registrations before Jan 1, and $750 per person for registrations after Jan 1. We try to keep our course as one of the most affordable PDCs in the country. Most PDCs cost anywhere from $1000 to $2500. Why is ours cheaper? By designing this course for commuters and local residents, we don't need to factor in the cost of housing and meals into the course, which keeps costs down significantly. Even with the relatively lower cost of the course, if you are still struggling to afford the tuition, you can try fundraising your tuition with our friends at WeTheTrees, a permaculture crowdsourcing website created specifically for this purpose. We also offer discounts for groups of 3 or more students and tuition reimbursement for anybody who does an internship or apprenticeship with us.

Who is this course for? 

This course is aimed at anyone who wants to live a more sustainable or regenerative lifestyle, bring more meaning into their lives, build a stronger community, and/or work towards an ecologically responsible future. This course is also ideal for backyard gardeners, homeowners, landscapers and landscape designers, teachers/educators, farmers, community organizers, nonprofit workers, orchardists, horticulturalists, students, etc. The curriculum of a PDC is designed to be introductory in nature, so there are no prerequisites needed to take it.

Do I have to commute?

This course is designed for people who live close enough that they can travel to and from class each day. Some people who live a little further may find that it makes more sense for them to stay somewhere locally Saturday nights to cut down on travel time. We are happy to suggest nearby accommodation for students who wish to do this, but we do not yet have the facilities to host students ourselves on the farm.

How far is the farm from Philadelphia?

Depending on where you're coming from in Philly, our farm is about 45 minutes to 1 hour away. 

How do I find out more information?

You can find out more information about the course, its content, and the instructors and site for the course at our course website here: hundredfruitfarm.com/pdc

How do I register?

To register, you will need to pay a 10% deposit right here at eventbrite to secure your place in the course. The eventbrite registration will cover the 10% deposit and the remainder can be paid via Paypal, check, or Venmo at the beginning of the course. Please also feel free to contact us if you have any questions about the course. Deposits are non-refundable unless the course is cancelled, in which case you will be fully refunded for any deposits made.

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Hundred Fruit Farm

1744 Holicong Road

New Hope, PA 18938

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Refund Policy

No Refunds

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