Permaculture: You’ve Heard of It, But What the Heck Is It?

Permaculture: You’ve Heard of It, But What the Heck Is It?

Five talking points to explain sustainable agriculture's underground cousin.

Maybe it came up during a dinner party: “I was just at this permaculture farm and they were planting mashua under their locust trees.” Or maybe a friend just came back from a permaculture course: “Dude, I am totally transformed! I’m moving to Kauai to join a community where they grow jojoba for biodiesel. If I work 12 hours a week, they’ll let me live in a solar-powered yurt!”

Not catching the drift? You’re not alone. Is permaculture a gardening technique or a special approach to farming, like biodynamics? Is it some type of back-to-the-land, off-the-grid intentional community? Is it about sustainable architecture, aquaponics, philosophy, horticulture, design? Permaculture is all that and then some, which is why it’s so hard for anyone to capture what it means in one neat sentence.