Permaculture Design Course (PDC) January


January Fri 12 – Fri 26, 2018

Immerse yourself in permaculture for a 2-week living, learning experience at Djanbung Gardens. Gain the knowledge and skills to design your property, create abundance, build resilient community and bring practical sustainability into your personal life, profession and workplace.

A comprehensive introduction to permaculture principles, applications & design practices, the 80+hour PDC at Djanbung Gardens includes the standard 72-hour international PDC curriculum, addressing all major climatic zones (temperate, subtropic, tropical & arid) and the breadth of permaculture applications for sustainable urban, rural & bioregional design and development.

Our permaculture training gives special attention to climatic zones represented by course participants. The course meets a common international standard as a foundation course for permaculture practitioners and teachers.

NEXT INTENSIVE RESIDENTIAL PDC at Djanbung Gardens: January 12-26, 2018 with leading international permaculture pioneer and trainer Robyn Francis and the PCA team Janelle Schafer, Guy Stewart, Annaliese Hordern, Angela Skehan, Melian Fertl & Guests.

Fantastic! Inspiring, informative, practical, engaging.” – Niall, Ireland

Informative, creative, relevant, cram packed, up to date” – Aleasa, NSW

An excellent course. This course helped deepen my understanding of permaculture. I felt deeply inspired to step up into leadership for the changing world.” Jason, USA


melcookingJanuary The 2-week intensive PDC at Djanbung Gardens is an inspiring and empowering experience, in a living working permaculture farm where the concepts taught are practiced. Located in the beautiful Nimbin Valley, an area famous for it’s natural beauty, rainforests, sustainability initiatives and alternative culture.

The January PDC is in summer here in the southern hemisphere. Days can be very hot with maximum temperatures ranging from 30-38 deg. If there’s rain or cloudy weather the temperatures will be more moderate.

Course commences 9am Fri 12th January and Ends 4.00pm Fri 26th Jan  NB participants are encouraged to arrive on Thursday 11th to set up camp and book in. (NB catering does not start until lunchtime Fri 12th – communal kitchen available, or cafes in town just 10min walk away)

COST:  $2150 or Early Bird price $1900 if fees paid in full before Dec 14, 2017. See details below for Fair-Share Exchange and multiple registration discounts. Course fees include tuition, PDC Handbook and resources, full catering and free camping. Limited bunk and private accommodation available for extra cost, or check out other accommodation options in Nimbin. We do have a few small tents available for hire.

Course Catering by Abundance Cafe and our permaculture chef, Melian Fertl – food features fresh garden, local and organic produce, international cuisine with options for omnivores (local free-range meats) and vegetarian diets. Gluten free can also be catered for.

Fair-Share Exchange and multiple registration/couple discounts – please contact us and enquire.

To register please download and submit the registration form


Register now and pay $300 deposit to secure your place. Balance due before course commencement.  EARLY BIRD SPECIAL discount if you pay full fee before Dec 14, 2017.  10% off for couples or multiple registrations.  Limited opportunities for partial work exchange for low income applicants – please enquire about our FairShare program. For those who’ve already done a PDC and want to hone up your knowledge and skills through a refresher course, we also offer a special refresher PDC discount. IMPORTANT please download and complete the registration form and email it to us if you are applying for a special discount


Course Topics

• Permaculture principles, ethics, design methodologies, & pathways to sustainability

• Patterns and processes in nature, biome approach to sustainable management, essential earth systems science and understanding global climate influences

• Soil ecology, organic soil management, mulches and compost

• Water management planning, collection, storage and conservation, earthworks and aquaculture

• Forest ecosystems and design of forests for food, forage, fibre, structural materials, habitat, conservation, wildlife, tree-cropping and farm forestry

• Food producing systems for home gardens, small holdings, urban systems to broad acre farmlands

• Design to reduce vulnerability to fire, drought, natural disasters, and impacts of global climate change

• Appropriate technology, renewable energy systems, and passive solar house design

• Bioregional & community development strategies, urban renewal, eco-village design, community economics, legal structures, community gardens and city farms


Skills & Knowledge you will learn

• integrated approach to earth systems science, working with ecological processes and planetary life sustaining systems

• Practical design for low energy productive urban and rural environments: domestic to broad-scale

• Holistic approach to sustainable landuse planning, conservation and resource management

• Creative problem solving and participatory processes to facilitate positive change

• Tools for community building, bioregional sustainability & transition initiatives

• Strategies for individual, enterprise and community response to peak oil, climate change, globalisation, and challenges of the 21stC


Who should attend a PDC?

• Individuals concerned with sustainable lifestyle and self-reliance

• Property owners (rural and urban) and developers

• Educators, community workers and people involved in transition initiatives

• Workers and volunteers involved in sustainable aid and development

• Environmental and social activists

• Professionals such as architects, planners, engineers, biological and social sciences

• Trades: builders, electrics, plumbers etc

• All sectors of sustainable horticulture, agriculture, conservation & land management practices.


Why do a Course with PCA?

Robyn-FrancisRobyn Francis, the main teacher, is one of the world’s most experienced and respected permaculture educators and designers. She has taught over 140 PDCs in 15 different countries, plus as many advanced courses in diverse areas of professional permaculture practices including Teacher Training; Community Facilitation; Ecovillage Design; Sustainable Aid and Development;  Social Permaculture; Design for Food Security & Year-round Food Production. She was one of the key instigators of the Accredited Permaculture Training and has spent 11 years providing full-time accredited vocational training in Permaculture Certificates III, IV and Diploma of Permaculture. Now thousands of her graduates are doing important work in all continents and climates. Robyn was mentored by Bill Mollison and co-taught with him in the 1980’s.

The PCA teaching team includes a great line-up of local trainers sharing experience in their specialist fields of expertise.  PCA is committed to providing high quality training and all trainers have recognised permaculture qualifications and teacher training. We also encourage trainee permaculture teachers to gain experience with us and are mentoring a new generation. Meet our teaching team.

Djanbung Gardens is a living classroom of forest, gardens, animals, buildings and technology as integrated permaculture design

Djanbung Gardens is a living classroom of forest, gardens, animals, buildings and technology as integrated permaculture design

The Venue: Djanbung Gardens has been described as one of permaculture’s best designed properties in the subtropics and been featured in books and magazines around the world. Established in 1994 as a living learnscape, you will learn in an environment where the concepts taught are being practiced in the spirit of Earth Care and People Care.

We endeavour to keep our courses affordable and they are priced to cover costs. You will find our course fees are generally lower than comparable residential PDCs and offer exceptionally good quality and value.

If you cancel your course more than two weeks before the course commencement date you will receive a refund of fees paid minus a $200 administration fee.
Cancellations 5-14 days prior to course commencement you will be refunded 50% of the course fee.
Cancellations less than 5 days prior to course commencement date you will be refunded 30% of the course fee.


3 reviews for Permaculture Design Course (PDC) January

  1. vinhost

    “Doing the PDC and Advanced Design Skills/FLOW in a school where permaculture principles are practiced and applied on the property itself was the optimum learning environment for grasping the concepts of permaculture. To be able to experience and witness the principles and practices first hand was an invaluable learning experience in the training. Robyn’s in depth knowledge and experience in the subject gave students a huge insight into international and local permaculture projects. The extensive library available at Djanbung gardens is a huge bonus for students.” – Caroline, NSW

  2. vinhost

    “My PDC was a life-changing experience, and I recognize that much of this was due to the careful planning and consideration that had gone into the teaching in order to make it as effective as possible as a learning experience. In fact, even though I have not done a Teacher Training with Robyn, I learned a lot about good teaching just observing how she did it. Now I not only try to incorporate permaculture principles in my home design, food production etc., but I also try to apply those principles of teaching in my work — making my teaching student-centered, focusing less on mere distribution of information and more on learning outcomes, different learning styles, and methods, processes and exercises that will make the learning more effective.” – Mari, USA

  3. vinhost

    “I loved it. Integration of permaculture ideology blended with life skills. Great exhibition farm showing how it all can be done. Specially enjoyed harvesting then eating directly. Level of interaction was good too – resources available onsite (such as library) was very helpful. Really, Robyn just wanted to see everyone understand Permaculture and take something away with them, and this reflected in her giving and teaching method.” – Cheryl, Samoa

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