Leeds PDC 2012 Timetable

This is a course timetable for a PDc run in 2012 in Leeds by Andy Goldring. The course runs over 7 weekends, one weekend a month from February  till June .  See linked pdf beside for full timetable Leeds_PDC_2012_timetable

pdc-AndyG-leeds2012A list of the things we will include in the sessions – really an indication of what we will be covering during the course. Some things will be very quick – an explanation of the terms and where to find out more, other topics will be in more depth. This will depend partly on the group.

Introductions & expectations

  • Introducing the course
  •  Why are we doing the course?
  •  Tutor intros
  •  Student intros
  •  Skills we want to learn
  •  Projects / properties / land we want to develop
  •  Tutor and student expectations
  •  Learning strategies

Permaculture overview

  • Background and history
  • Observation exercise
  • Permaculture- ethics, principles, design and key characteristics

Permaculture in the UK

  • Case-studies of current projects in the UK

Survey exercise

  • Working with fixed points and grids
  • Measuring own pace
  • Making and using an A-frame and water level
  • Making a base map
  • Identify other survey methods (eg GPS) and tools (eg laser)

Weekend evaluation & notices

  • Each weekend will end with an evaluation
  • Different methods will be used to provide a range of methods for students to use in own projects.

Permaculture Principles

  • Patterns in nature
  • Input-output game
  • Principles game will cover each principle and give examples
  • Signposting key aspects of permaculture
  • We will cover different sets of principles and how they were developed

Understanding ecosystems

  • Key concepts: energy, food webs, biodiversity, etc and their relevance to permaculture
  • Climatic zones
  • Soil food web as key example

Permaculture Design

  • Design process (OBRADIME, SADI)
  • Patterns in Design
  • Zoning
  • Sectors
  • Mcharg exclusion method
  • Pattern Language
  • Microclimates 1
  • Involving people in design
  • Thinking tools

Permaculture landscapes

  • Focus on permaculture zones 3,4 & 5.
  • Zoning game to include patterns of elements
  • Water in the landscape
  •  Trees and windbreaks
  • Biodiversity strategies
  • Broadscale approaches to farming
  • Introduce Keyline planning and holistic management

Permaculture and the built environment

  • Focus on zone 0
  • Buildings – new build and retrofit, eco homes, ‘green’ building and ‘natural’ building
  • Transport
  • Water, toilets, sewage
  • Microclimates 2
  • Design
  • Passive solar case study: cornerstone bio-shelter
  • Urban garden examples: urban harvest, skips, what if? guerilla etc
  • Appropriate technology – key concepts and technologies
  • House retrofit design case study

International permaculture

  •  Case studies: Jordan, El salvador, Malawi or Indonesia
  •  Scope of international network
  •  Drylands and tropical – examples and how to find out more

Social Permaculture

  • Four generations model
  • Community practical (movement)
  • Ecovillages, coops, co-housing
  • Organisational design case study

Permaculture economies

  • Bioregions and design for local economies
  • Credit unions and other economic strategies
  • Who are we trading with?
  • Cyclic clothing scheme in Leeds as example
  • Legal structures, CSA

Permaculture Gardens

  • Focus on zones 1 & 2
  • Composting
  • Plants and plant assemblies / guilds
  • Polycultures, companion planting
  • Integrated Pest Management, Dynamic accumulators etc
  • Myco-tech (mushrooms)
  • Allotment gardening
  • Forest gardens


  • A series of afternoon sessions will be held
  • We will try to cover as many different practical skills as possible, and use the practical sessions to bring the theory to life.

Urban Walkabout

  • Visit to a variety of locations in Leeds:
  • 29 Sholebroke Mount, Tim Harberd’s, Methleys and Ecohomes

Mini design exercise

  • Tutor led example in the field
  • Student design work exercise in groups

Course Trip

  • Cornerstone housing coop:
  • Irrigation
  • Rainwater harvesting
  • Tour of garden
  • House retrofit examples
  • Sketch map mini design exercise
  • Old Slenningford Forest Garden and other projects

Project planning

  • What sort of project are you planning?
  • Site selection and tips (contamination etc)
  • Accessing land and buying land -tenure (Land of Roots case study, Ecological Land Cooperative)
  • Project planning guidelines

Group Design Exercise

  • All students will work in groups over two weekends to develop a permaculture design.
  • Presentations are made on the last day

Where next?

  • Diploma in Applied Permaculture Design
  • Identifying own goals, projects and next steps
  • Network – local and national
  • Signposting other support and opportunities

Course evaluation

  • A mixture of tutor designed evaluation process and student’s own evaluation methods