Food Sovereighty

Permaculture Design Course

Earthcare’s annual residential PDC will next run in Feb/March 2025.  Our venue is Tui Community in Golden Bay, New Zealand.

Find your purpose and learn how to make a difference in our fast changing world.
This internationally certified residential Permaculture design course, focuses on life as a process.

Experience deep ecology and discover your place within the natural world.

Learn how to transform degraded landscapes into thriving resilient habitats.
Our residential course, facilitates community in action as we share knowledge, food, field visits, and educational and social activities together.

Hands on practical experience enables you to embody the Permaculture principles and ethics, accelerating your learning and effectiveness in any situation.

These are the gateways to your inner Permaculture world.

Don’t just DO Permaculture, BE Permaculture! 

‘Permaculture’ is an integrated landuse design methodology based on ecological principles, with practical application from sustainable household to eco-nation to global restoration.

This course covers the standard 2-week international Permaculture Design Certificate curriculum, over an extended 18-day period, taught in an integrated hands-on way, culminating in a comprehensive land-use design project. Upon completion, a Permaculture Design Certificate will be issued by The Institute of Earthcare Education Aotearoa.

By expanding on the usual 14-days format and extending over 18 days this course offers you more than a normal PDC: The additional 4 days allow us to provide you with a broader experience including more community building, hands-on skill-building activities, mini-design exercises, and visits to inspirational properties which demonstrate Permaculture in practice.

Robina Tutoring SLC.IMG_3984

The course is designed to develop a supportive learning community. This includes a series of Deep Ecology experiences in the Work that Reconnects to uncover and sustain our passion for the healing of the world.

The tutors have extensive experience in their fields and have worked in a wide range of countries and conditions. Their teaching style caters for a variety of learning modalities, is inspiring, interactive, dynamic and fun. Main tutors of this course will be Robina McCurdy and Charley Bradley who bring extensive practical and educational experience to this course. Sol Morgan and Inna Alex will also be part of the teaching team and share their joy and knowledge of sustainable land use and living.

Robina 2023

Wainui Bay

The venue is Tui Community, an almost 40-year old, 30 member, rural, intentional community governed by a Charitable Trust.  It is situated on 150 acres of land, has an established orchard, gardens, wilderness areas, many creatively designed buildings and a thriving community business.
We will be based at Tui’s Outdoor Events Treefield, situated in beautiful Wainui Bay, adjoining the Abel Tasman National Park. Facilities are built close to nature and rustic. Accommodation is camping-style in your own tent or communal sleeping structures.
Wainui Bay NZ

"This PDC was a fully immersive, life-altering kind of experience. Robina and Charley were so committed to us throughout the course. We learnt SO much. The people care and sense of community was a big partof the experience."  (Zoe, Tui PDC 2023

“Having the opportunity to learn from a range of incredibly knowledgable permaculture leaders in a supportive and fun environment has been an invaluable experience.”  (Rachel, Tui PDC 2021)

I felt immediately safe when I arrive at this course and met the team. I recognised the empathy and experience in running a course over 18 days and felt secure in a new environment.” (Sue, Tui PDC 2021)

I absolutely loved Robina’s unique style and her ability to keep us all connected and engaged.” (Kate, Tui PDC 2021)

# Charley with students designingIMG_6884
Charley SLC Carpentry

The Course Programme broadly covers:

–  permaculture ethics, design principles and implementation,

–  organic growing methods (vege gardens, herbs, fruit),

–  rural land management (orchards, pastures, trees, water systems),

–  integrated animal systems,

–  water harvesting & storage, grey-water & ‘waste’ recycling,

–  ecological building,

–  renewable energy systems,

–  suburban-scale design.

For further detail on the structure of the course, click here.

The course is usually fully booked by the beginning of January, so we advise you register and secure your spot early on to avoid disappointment.

NZ$ 2,450/2,250/2,050 
The cost includes registration, tuition, field trips, course materials, vegetarian food, and 18 nights camping accommodation (own tent/van).

Prices are based on a sliding scale according to income & financial means. The sliding scale of 3 price levels (above) is a method of enabling those less able (eg students, lower income earners) to get a significantly discounted rate, whilst providing the opportunity for those more able to pay full fee. Participants choose themselves which cost bracket they feel appropriate for them to pay.
There are scholarship opportunities available for this course. Please enquire.

Early booking discounts of $100/50 apply for spaces booked by Nov 1st/Dec 1st.
There is a non-refundable deposit of NZ$350 to hold your space on the course. We prefer you paying the deposit (and the remaining balance later on) via direct credit into our NZ bank account. However, also is the possibility to pay by credit card via paypal. There is no charge to pay your deposit this way, but paying remaining balances this way occurs a 4.4% fee which is added into the total.

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Here’s what a few of our previous PDC participants had to say about the course:

“This PDC is a unique opportunity to learn about earth care, people care and fair share in a caring, passionate community. The course pushes boundaries ofpersonal growth, acknowledges grief for the planet, and addresses the need for action in a way that allows us to build solutions and design next steps together; this leads to inspiration and connection, over fear.” (Lydia, Tui PDC 2023)

“An exciting dive into the deep end of Permaculture. A brief but comprehensive overview of the what, why and how of this ecological design system/philosophy. A huge amount covered in 18 days, laying a solid foundational structure for lifelong permaculture learning. Thank you!” (John, Tui PDC 2023)

“An informative, interesting and fun experience that will change the way you see the world.” (Caroline, Tui PDC 2021)

“A very transformative experience that didn’t only expand my knowledge base, but gifted me an opportunity to connect with like-minded souls, open up, and reconnect with a sense of purpose and direction.” (Abha, Tui PDC 2021)

“I feel resourced, connected and deeply grateful. This experience has given me the confidence to trust those inner knowings that there is a better way.”  (Rachel Zainey, Tui PDC 2023)

“I am now confident that I can look at a piece of land, connect with it and see the possibilities of successful permaculture. The course was beyond expectation.” (Fran, Auckland)

“The most beautiful, thoughtful and inspiring course I’ve ever done, that has changed the way I view myself on this land.” (Sarah, Melbourne)

“This course provides you with an extensive introduction to the design principles of permaculture in an invigorating and nurturing environment. You will have your understanding about the world challenged and will leave after 18 days renewed and empowered to make effective change to the world.” (Sue 2021)

Site Inspection