Permaculture Design Course 2019-05-28T11:30:19+00:00

Permaculture Design Course

PDC #27 Starts Wednesday 7th August – bookings now open

What is Permaculture?

Permaculture is a design science, philosophy & lifestyle that merges natural principles with human management systems. The aim of Permaculture is to design regenerative and productive landscapes, communities & households. Created from a combination of traditional wisdom, modern science & technology and a detailed understanding of natural processes, Permaculture provides practical solutions to current unsustainable living standards, empowering people with the tools to create a better world and to generate lifestyles which minimise our impact on the environment. Permaculture Design is based on ethics and principles which can be used to establish, design, manage and improve all efforts made by individuals, households and communities towards a regenerative future.

CERES Permaculture Design Course (PDC)

The CERES PDC is a classroom-based, theoretical course. This is not intended to be a hands-on, practical or gardening course. Primarily, this is a design course that is contextualised within socio-political & environmental systems.

The PDC is intended to produce graduate Permaculture designers, ready to apply their Permaculture knowledge in their own lives and to continue self-directed learning into their individual areas of interest.

The extensive course material covers the whole design course curriculum within the context of urban & regional landscapes of cool temperate south-eastern Australia. The course pivots around a 3 hr, weekly class/presentation, with additional weekend classes, site visits and tours. The course also requires students to complete an individual project and a groups Permaculture Design project to demonstrate their learning throughout the course.

This 100+ hour course is delivered by a range of passionate, professional Permaculture teachers and practitioners from urban and regional areas.

Part payment plans are available, please contact Luisa to discuss

CERES PDC graduates may be able to gain credits towards components of accredited Permaculture qualifications subject to a relevant RTOs’ RPL policies and procedures. You are encouraged to speak directly to RTOs to clarify this.


Book Online Now

PDC #27 Starts Wednesday 7th August 2019

PDC 27 Schedule
Book Online Now


  • What is Permaculture: Ethics, Principles & history
  • The Ecological basis of Permaculture: Global Climate, Weather & Ecology
  • Patterns in the Landscape: Major patterns of Geology, Flora, Water & Land use
  • Permaculture Design Methodology: Permaculture design process and practice
  • Land use and Nature Stewardship: Soil, cropping, water use and animals in Permaculture systems
  • Social applications: Permaculture design in the broader contexts of communities.
  • Finance & Economics, Land tenure & economic reform: Permaculture design in the broader contexts of Economies, business & settlements
  • Permaculture in built environments and technologies: Appropriate technology & building techniques for a energy-descent future.
  • Implementing Permaculture: Business strategies, personal strategies and practicing Permaculture beyond the PDC.

Study load:

The PDC is a commitment.

Approx. 4-6hrs per week of project work

Approx. 2-3hrs per week of reading time


This course includes study beyond the class hours. Students are required to complete two projects (one individual and one group) that are requirements to pass the course. Approximately 4-6 hours per week should be allocated to these projects throughout the duration of the course. The projects are not graded but are an essential part of learning Permaculture design.

Self-directed learning:

To gain the most out of the PDC, students are encouraged to read further materials before and after each class topic. Reading materials and online learning resources are provided and students are encouraged to be self-directed learners in using the PDC as a launching pad into topics covered. Recommend 2-3 hours per week of additional reading & research.

Dates, times:

There are three PDCs each year at CERES.

Currently these PDCs run:

  • Early February-Late May
  • Late April-Early August
  • Early August-Late November

The course will include two full weekends away to Permaculture sites in Victoria.

Course Start Dates & Length: PDC #27 starts Wednesday 7th August 2019. 15 evenings 6.30 – 9.30pm 9 weekend days 9.30am – 5pm

Compulsory requirements to pass the course and obtain a Permaculture Design Course certification:

-Students are required to attend 90% of the course content and must complete the core subjects of Permaculture Principles & Ethics and all design subjects

-Students are required to complete both projects during the course

The PDC facilitator will use discretion to make the final decision over any pass/fail decisions.

Course outcomes:

  • An appreciation of the fundamentals of permaculture and the historical context in which it was developed.
  • Ability to incorporate ecological and energy literacy/understanding in the design process
  • An ability to read patterns in landscapes and understand how they influence design choices
  • An understanding of the design processes and the conceptual design tools used in permaculture, as background for later application topics.
  • An ability to design food production and other agricultural systems in appropriate landscapes
  • An understanding of how communities function and how permaculture concepts can be used to build functional communities.
  • An understanding of how trading functions and how permaculture concepts can be used to build more equitable systems.
  • Understanding of how settlements can be designed to meet human needs on a sustainable basis
  • An understanding of how buildings can be designed to meet human needs on a sustainable basis.
  • An appreciation of the technologies that are available to assist in building sustainable lifestyles – renewable energies and conservation of non-renewable resources.
  • Confidence in one’s ability to make a difference at the individual level.

Participants who complete the course will earn a CERES Permaculture Design Course certificate  CERES PDC graduates may be able to gain credits towards components of accredited Permaculture qualifications subject to a relevant RTOs’ RPL policies and procedures. You are encouraged to speak directly to RTOs to clarify this.

Participants will be provided with access to an online portal with resources as well as a resource folder and permaculture textbook. There is an expectation of attendance to all sessions for completion of the certificate. Where classes are missed they can be made up in another course stream.

Be prepared for classroom work and work in the field. Excursions will be in the course schedule and participants will need to be dressed in outdoor gear to protect against the weather.

PDC #27 Starts Wednesday 7th August 2019

Book Online

CERES PDC #27 starts Wednesday 7th August 2019 – bookings now open

Book now at CERES Reception – 9389 0100 or online – 

Book Online Now

Course Length:
15 Wednesday  evenings 6.30 – 9.30pm
Some Saturdays and Sundays 9.30am – 5pm

CERES Community Environment Park

Full fee $1895 | CERES member/concession $1775

Payment info:
Payment in full is required upon enrolment to secure a place on the course. Please contact us on 9389 0100 should you not have access to a credit card as payment can be made by cash, eftpos or cheque via reception.  Should you be keen to attend and warrant consideration for a payment plan, please contact Luisa below.

Class size:
Limited to 20 students.

PDC 27 Schedule

Give Luisa Cardamone a call
9389 0124
Send her an email