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Upcoming Events


Gardening Like the Forest
Evening Public Lecture and Weekend Workshop
Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute, Auburn, NY

Sponsored by:
Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute
Owasco Watershed Lake Association
Auburn Beautification Commission
Friday Night: suggested $10 at door.
Workshop: Sliding Scale $180-$250

For more information and to register:
(link coming soon)

Friday evening public talk: 7-9 PM, June 9, 2017
Regenerating Watersheds through Ecological Food Production
Healthy forests maintain, fertilize, and renew themselves, naturally. They also build and maintain healthy watersheds. Would you like to grow an abundant food-producing ecosystem like that in your yard or on your farm? You can! Edible forest gardens mimic the structure and function of natural forests through all their stages of development and grow food, fuel, fiber, fodder, fertilizers, farmaceuticals, and fun. We can meet our own needs and regenerate healthy ecosystems at the same time. This talk introduces the vision of forest gardening with some scientific background, a few living examples, and a sampling of some useful perennial edibles for home- or farm-scale. We'll pay special attention to how forest garden systems can help rebuild the health of Owasco Lake.

You can come to the evening lecture alone, or register for the whole weekend and get into the lecture free.

Saturday-Sunday Workshop: 8:30-5, June 10-11, 2017
Fundamentals of Ecological Gardening
Learn how to create healthy food-producing ecosystems by mimicking the structure and function of natural communities! Building on the Friday night talk, for two days we'll explore the vision, theory, design, and practice of ecosystem agriculture using temperate deciduous forests as models. Lectures, field observations, and experiential classes will reveal the nature of ecosystem architecture, social structure, underground economics, and succession. Participants will also design and plant some forest garden patches at the Auburn Permaculture Park. We'll learn by doing, and by playing in a serious way.

Food Forestry for Your Backyard
July 14-16, 2017, Omega Institute, Rhinebeck, NY

Sponsored by:
Omega Center for Sustainable Living
150 Lake Drive
Rhinebeck, NY  12572

For more information and to register:

Explore the ecological depths of your own backyard–and your inner landscape–while you learn to create a thriving ecosystem that feeds your body and spirit, nourishes the planet, and strengthens human and natural communities.

Ecological design pioneer Dave Jacke, author of Edible Forest Gardens, draws out the fundamentals of ecological design as we engage with ecological principles and practices, and review case studies from around the world.

Together we’ll assess the Omega landscape and consider how to make the ecosystem healthier and more productive by designing a forest garden—a polyculture of multipurpose perennial plants that mimics natural forest ecosystems and also grows food, fuel, fiber, fodder, fertilizer, “farmaceuticals,” and fun.

Applying ecological design methods shows us how to embody a new cultural framework while teaching essential skills for renewing and regenerating ourselves, our regional ecosystems, and our communities back home.

Open to beginners as well as those with some experience.  This workshop provides the basis for continued studies in permaculture.


Edible Ecosystems Emerging:
A 9-Day Forest Garden Design Intensive
with Dave Jacke, Juliette Olshock, Seth Nyer, and Jon Darby
October 13-22, 2017; Heritage Creek Farm Camp, Mount Joy, PA

Sponsored by:
Horn Farm Center for Agricultural Education
For more information and to register:


Forest ecosystems exhibit many beneficial properties we humans could stand to emulate in our culture, agriculture, and horticulture:
  • They maintain, renew, fertilize, and propagate themselves without human inputs;
  • They build, store, and conserve clean air, clean water, nutrients, soil quality, and biodiversity;
  • They exhibit stability, resilience, and adaptability.
These qualities emerge from the dynamics of the forest as a whole system, not from any one or more of the elements that comprise the forest alone. To design productive edible ecosystems that express these same qualities, we must understand forest structures, functions, patterns, and processes, and use this knowledge wisely.

In this nine-day intensive course, you will dive deeply into the vision, theory, and practice of designing wholesome, dynamic, and resilient edible ecosystems using temperate deciduous forests as models. Dave Jacke and his teaching team will offer lectures, site walks, and experiential classes to help you understand how the architecture, social structure, underground economics, and successional processes of natural forests apply to the design of edible ecosystems of all kinds. You'll learn a variety of ecological design processes while designing a range of food-producing ecosystems at the Heritage Creek Farm Camp. Design projects could include designing forest gardens for: urban or suburban homesteads, an educational summer camp, farm-scale (up to 20 acres), or an edible stream corridor. We'll also engage with issues of garden management, economics, and the deep paradigmatic shifts required to succeed at co-creating 'humanatural' landscapes and cultures. You will leave inspired and empowered to design food forests at home for yourself, and your friends, neighbors, and clients.

A 9-Day
Educator Training

August 18-27, 2017,
Omega Institute, Rhinebeck, NY

Humans and nature intertwine irrevocably. Consequently, ecological principles operate within all aspects of human culture and our own lives—and permaculture's regenerative design framework applies to all aspects of culture, including the classroom. We must therefore design learning events as whole, healthy educational ecosystems for whole people.

The ability to design and the ability to learn both live inherent in all human beings.  These two natural human functions relate strongly to each other—they integrate us within ourselves, and us with our surroundings.  Yet "teaching" from a place of power over, control, or idolatry creates a false separation between "teacher" and "student" akin to the false separation between humans and nature that our culture propagates.  On the other hand, "education" literally means 'to draw out,' not to stuff in, fill up, inhale, or engorge.  Design AS education and education AS design lies at the core of the synthesis our culture needs here and now.

This intensive permaculture educator training embodies and explores this educational approach. Learn how to design and run permaculture workshops, courses, and other educational experiences as ecosystems—by designing and running them!  Seasoned educator Dave Jacke and his team guide you to: assess and design for students’ learning niches; create effective learning environments; plan for, budget, and market an event; and devise multifunctional, functionally interconnected courses where the whole experience is greater than the sum of the sessions.

Together, we face fears, transform inhibiting narratives, share constructively, and grow deeply in a healthy, safe, supportive, and fun learning environment.  We also engage with the business of teaching, among other practical aspects.  This rigorous course culminates with you designing and coteaching a daylong public permaculture workshop series along with your peers.  You will leave with new skills and experiences under your belt, and feel empowered to propagate permaculture and embody the change you want to see in the world.  In fact, we support you before, during, and after the training to design and run a permaculture workshop on your own post-training!

By shifting the culture of education, we shift the culture of those with whom we engage as educators—and culture shift is what its all about!  Join us if you dare!

Dave Jacke,
Chris Jackson, and Kim Almeida.

For More Info & to Apply:
Attendance requires prior completion of a PDC and an application and acceptance process.  There is homework and a webinar pre-course, also.  Scholarships available.  For details, visit https://www.eomega.org/pctt