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Permaculture Site Assessment Practicum – Nick Huggins

Wanted – 2 persons (only) with PDC that are keen to learn and assist on a 15 acre farm that is undergoing re-design in Northern NSW, Australia.

About 12 months ago Geoff Lawton and interns went on pAid consultation to the site with the client and set out the basics — water, access and structures. They also complied a report as a class activity on steps forward for the client.

The client has now engaged my pAid services for a full design and documentation to plan his family’s food security. What I’m hoping to share with two fellow permaculture consultants is the process of site assessment, setting out the earthworks and design of animal and garden systems.

Warning: This will be hard work. It will be very hot. There will be snakes! There will be lots of walking. At the end of the project you will have a full permaculture design document that you will be credited in as an assistant permaculture designer which you can then use to show potential clients and promote your own work as a permaculture consultant.

Date: 28th Oct 2011
Location: Round Mountain, North NSW (Tweed Coast) — 1hr 45min from Brisbane, 50min from the PRI (Zaytuna Farm), 30min from the Gold Coast.
Travel Allowance: $50 Per person. If you would like a lift down to site, Gold Coast pickup available.
Lunch: BYO
Time: 9am to 3pm.
Cost: Free!

Please send expressions of interest to:

Nick Huggins
Email: nick (at)
Tel. 0417 010 965


  1. Thanks for opening this up Nick,

    I just wish there where more opportunities like this in U.K. They just don’t exist… Anyone anywhere doing anything like this in U.K. or Europe????… (in good humour I doubt your generous 50 dollar travel allowance will stretch this far ) I am gagging to get more experience with ‘working designers’. I would gladly latch myself onto David Spicer but he is just to far away!!!

  2. Opportunities to work with good designers are far and few between and it is unfortunate we do not see any such offers coming up on this site. I agree Alexander that David Spicer would be an ideal person with whom to work but he is a little too far away from me as well. Actually I think the travel rate is $0.81 on a project such as this :).

  3. thanks for the wrap guys, I think any where you can get this sort of earthworks expeirence is a plus {it is the bones of the system}
    get that right and and you have your main frame

  4. Thanks everyone who called and emailed me within the first hour of the post going up.
    I had over 30 email + calls and there still coming in. I have filled the 2 spots and wont be considering any more.
    Keep your ear to the ground for more Practicums soon.

  5. Thanks very much for the practical experience in both site assessment and operating a permaculture consultancy. It was great to see how you approached the site evaluation to develop a permaculture design and deliver on the client’s specific expectations. I found it a vaulable experience to hear how you and others assessed the site’s advantages and challenges and how you used these to inform designing a functional and productive landscape.

    Your down-to-earth approach in particular gave me confidence in my own skills and taught me that applying permculture principles in a consultancy need not be confined exclusively to the realm of well-established gurus, but is a readily achievable goal. Making it that much more accessible to neophytes such as myself is crucial in promoting permaculture and sustainablility in general.

    Thanks again for sharing your skills and experience and giving others the opportunity to be involved.

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