Making a living in the permaculture field?

Discussion in 'Jobs, projects, courses, training, WWOOFing, volun' started by Daniel Westman, Apr 21, 2010.

  1. Daniel Westman

    Daniel Westman New Member

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    Hi everyone,
    I've been into permaculture for a few months and my goal is to attend a PDC-course on Zaytuna farm in 2011:). I've seen a lot of opportunities to volunteer around the world and contribute with your knowledge about permaculture, and I would love to spend some time volunteering and practicing and learning more in the field. I can't work as a volunteer my whole life though, because sooner or later I'll hopefully have some kids to support, which leads me to a question.

    How good is the long term ability to make a living working in the permaculture field? And don't get me wrong, I'm not interested in a career in permaculture hoping to make a fortune. I'm 2 years into college studying economics with a focus on retail and supply chain management, but since I first read about permaculture I've had second thoughts if a college degree is the right way to go for me. Since then I've been trying to come up with ways of combining my interest in business with my newfound interest in permaculture. I hope you want to share your thoughts on this matter. How many on this forum are living the permaculture dream so to speak? :cool:

    The different ways I've seen people become economically sustainable in permaculture are:
    - Run a permaculture project where you sell the produce in combination with holding PDC courses.
    - Run a permaculture consultant business and sell your services to other people, businessess and governments.
    - Run your own permaculture farm and become mostly self-sustainable on food, water and energy, which means you won't have to make that much money to be able to cover your other expenses.

    Any other ideas or thoughts on the matter of making a living using your knowledge in permaculture? I'm very grateful for any answers.
     
  2. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

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    We live well Daniel but will probably never be too rich. You can go to the website in the bottom and get some ideas for what we are doing at Purple Pear.
     
  3. 9anda1f

    9anda1f Administrator Staff Member

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  4. Some Chinese peasant proverbs to inspire the Permy farmer....

    "No food without blood and sweat."

    "In winter the lazy man starves to death."

    "Don't depend on heaven for food, but on your own two hands carrying the load."

    "If a man works hard the earth will not be lazy."





    .
     
  5. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

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    Thanks for the link Bill - it finishes the debate for me.
    "Get over it" is perfect advice IMO
     
  6. pebble

    pebble Junior Member

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    Thanks for the link 9anda1f :) It's good to reread that thread. I just read the bit where frosty was talking about disability and poverty and Geoff offers to help by phone amongst all his other things going on at the time. What a treasure.
     
  7. Nick Huggins GC Qld

    Nick Huggins GC Qld Junior Member

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    Hi Daniel,

    My Name is Nick Huggins and Im a full time permaculture consultant. Im my past life I was the managing director of my own large landscape company. To cut a long story short and answer your question yes you can make very good money from permaculture. I just finished a project in Wagga Wagga last week. I worked 14 days straight and made $5320 for my time. Around $60 per hr + travel, plus accomidation. Please stay tuned to the PRI website for POST of the same questions you just asked. I will be talking about working as a Permaculture consultant and designer and answering any questions via email. See my last story https://permaculture.org.au/2010/04/29/podcast-buy-water-rights-sell-riverinas-future/ .
     
  8. abdullah

    abdullah Junior Member

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    wow that 10 page thread from 07 was an interesting read.

    i have so many thoughts to share but i fear by the time i wrote one i would forget others and it wouldn't make so much sense, in any case ill have a crack.

    i think one important thing to do is practice within your means and start small, do local projects, on the weekends, start a community permaculture group or community garden group (stealth) then push the council for a grant and some land or do fundraising, then you have some experience at least, if your worthwhile people will seek you out to employ you as a consultant, then you can move up to larger projects and so on, until such time as you can make a living, and if one can make a living then vacate the townhouse and buy some acres and start a demonstration site, on which a few acres of well managed organic market garden would make a nice profit, you can take on volunteers or wwoofers and so on who may go on to follow the same path as you, once your place is growing well then go and do some aid work volunteering, once again if your worthwhile you will be sought out as others before you, and if you fail then you can retire to your market garden and live out your days teaching locals earth care and people care.

    well there ive drafted a sample path that could take several years even a decade, but i doubt many well known consultants started off as well known, im sure they did many years shoveling compost for someone else or as a volunteer or an assistant teacher or whatever.
     

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