Permaculture Systems Pamphlet
The project’s primary objective was to produce a pamphlet that explained permaculture principles. Specifically, the pamphlet was targeted at farmers, ranchers and gardeners to whom the concept of permaculture was new. The brochure was to touch on ethics, economics, design, sustainability and natural succession.
Permaculture is a combination of the words permanent and agriculture. The term refers to a sustainable approach of meeting human needs through the construction of productive ecosystems which do not degrade the natural environment. Permaculture sites integrate plants, animals, landscapes, structures and humans into symbiotic systems where the products of one element serve the needs of another.
Abstract of Results
The six-page pamphlet on permaculture was completed using feedback from a variety of reviewers. It was distributed and promoted by both the Institute and the Western SARE Professional Development Program. (See Sustainable Agriculture Resources section.)
A recent permaculture design course included the pamphlet in its literature, and it was one of the most widely reproduced handouts. The students universally noted the philosophical and practical emphasis of the pamphlet.
Reaction from Farmers and Ranchers
Although we have received little direct feedback from the farming and ranching communities, Susan Mullen, a permaculture educator in Gila, New Mexico, presented an earlier draft of the pamphlet at a meeting between ranchers and the Nature Conservancy. The ranchers found the pamphlet to be very informative and requested copies of the final version. Additionally, guest lecturers during the Institutes ninth annual design course, Chris Holstrom (Tomten Farm), Dennis Stenson (Happy Heart Farm), John Cruixshank (Sunrise Ranch), Michael Moore (Twin Oaks), Dan Howell (Running Rain Society) and Ken Kuhns, all reviewed the pamphlet and noted its universal audience, clear explanation of principles and excellence as a teaching tool.
Reported in 1996