Geoff Lawton Earthworks & Watershed Design Course

Stick around! Directly following the Convergence is 4 Day Advanced Permaculture Course with keynote speaker – Geoff Lawton:

Geoff Lawton Advanced Permaculture Intensive:
Earthworks, Watershed Design, & Food Forests


Oct 16 – 19, 2012

GreenFriends Farm, Castro Valley, CA


* This course is a rare opportunity to learn key earthworks, watershed design, reforestation, and food forest strategies from an experienced veteran in the field on an amazing broad-acre permaculture demonstration site in the heart of California’s rolling landscape.

For More Information & To Register Click Here.


Course Description:

Earthworks construction, reforestation initiatives, or food production projects can be a rewarding investment in your property and for your family, community, and bioregion. Improving the functionality, restoring ecosystem health, enhancing aesthetic appeal, and increasing the value of your landscape are all realistic and achievable potential outcomes. However, it can be intimidating to undertake large projects like ordering heavy machinery onto your property, or designing and installing a large food forest orchard. Getting it wrong can be discouraging and very expensive. This course will give you the knowledge, practical experience, and confidence to get the design and implementation plan of your earthworks and follow-up strategies right the first time around.

Course Details

In 4 days, you will learn the basic theory and practice of Permaculture Earthworks, Watershed Design, Food Forest & Agroforestry including site design, survey, and analysis; directing earthmoving machines to establish dams, swales, terraces, ponds etc; watershed design and restoration techniques; and designing and implementing reforestation, agroforestry, and food forest projects accordingly. This course will blend theory with hands-on practical application in the context of a real life project and landscape of GreenFriends Farm. Many of the existing broad acre permaculture projects and strategies being implemented on-site were influenced and initiated by Geoff Lawton 3 years ago, and have since taken flight. This course will be a wonderful opportunity to learn from Geoff as we survey and assess the conditions, goals, and success of these initiatives, and determine the best strategies moving forward.

Individual Day Description

Though the course is a progression and we highly recommend taking the entire course if possible, it is possible to sign up for individual or multiple days. Though the schedule is not exact, over a period of 4 very full, informative days… we intend to cover the following.

Day 1 (Tues, Oct 16): Broad-acre Earthworks & Watershed Design

During the first day of the course will be an overview of Permaculture Earthworks and Watershed Design Strategies, with a focus on Survey and Assessment. How do we approach a site or a client to determine what tools and strategies are available, and which will be most appropriate and effective? Where do we begin? How do we use those tools to determine our design? Throughout this 4 day course, GreenFriends Farm will be the Client. We will walk through the process with Geoff to survey, design and implement strategies best appropriate to the site, ecology, and climate, and learn much in the process.

Day 2 (Wed, Oct 17): Earthworks Design & Implementation

During this second day we will continue and go more into depth in Permaculture Earthworks such as: Roads, Damns, Swales, Ponds, keyline design, and more. We will also have an Earthworks machinery on-site, and intend to learn hands-on and implement some of the strategies we determine.

Day 3 (Thurs, Oct 18): Watershed Restoration – Upstream Strategies

It is said that “the health of your watershed depends on the percolation and depth of your soil upstream”. What are strategies to make best use of these underutilized and often neglected spaces? During this day we will continue to go more in depth on Earthworks & Watershed design with a focus on upstream strategies and Watershed Restoration such as: Riparian and Gully Strategies, Check-Damns, Gabions, Spring Cultivation, Reforestation, and more.

Day 4:  (Fri. Oct 19): Food Forests & Agro-Forestry

During the final day of the course, we will turn the focus to planting strategies, reforestation, agroforestry, and food forests. Now that our Earthworks and Watershed Design plans are underway… what are we going to plant and how do we integrate this with all the other components of our design? GreenFriends Farm already has an amazing reforestation project and a detailed, large orchard in place, which provide an excellent landscape and learning environment. Topics will include, selecting appropriate plant guilds and food forests; designing ecological corridors in existing systems, creating microclimates; designing for the Intersection of production, food forests, & agroforestry; deer protection and wildlife integration; integrating grazing plans & animals; phasing and succession of evolution, and more.

* Sign-Up for the Entire Course, or Select Days.

For More Information & To Register Click Here.

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