Saturday, 25 July 2015 22:37

The next big thing - permaculture

permaculture - learning how to grow things permaculture - learning how to grow things

A big name in the world of permaculture will be visiting Cyprus to teach the increasingly popular subject. The course ‘Introduction to Permaculture’, which is being repeated by popular demand after a very successful first one in October 2014, will be held in the eco village of Tries Elies in the district of Limassol at the foot of the Troodos mountains from July 31 – August 13.

‘Permaculture’ which historically comes from ‘permanent agriculture’ and has evolved into ‘permanent culture’ is an ecological design system for sustainability in all aspects of life. It teaches how to build natural homes, grow food, restore diminished landscapes and ecosystems, catch rainwater, build communities, take care of waste and much more.

Renowned speaker – experienced co-teachers

Graham Bell, one of the UK’s most experienced permaculture designers and teachers, has agreed to come to Cyprus to co-teach the 12-day fully certified permaculture design course. Bell teaches sustainable design, and has written two books on the subject. He has worked in many industries including construction (as an electrician to trade), transport, IT, training, design, horticulture, and business advice. As a business advisor he has touched almost every industry, and is passionate about entrepreneurship, business planning and mentoring, and team development programmes.

Co-teaching alongside will be two other trainers: Rakesh “Rootsman Rak”, an experienced permaculture designer/teacher and forest garden specialist, computer consultant, yoga teacher and homeopath who has been growing food for 40 years and designing and teaching edible landscaping, permaculture, eco village design and forest gardening for the past 5 years. Rakesh has designed and implemented forest gardens from small-scale private gardens and schools, to farms, community gardens and eco villages.

And Katerina “Kat” Constantinou. Katerina had co-organised one of the first certified PDCs (Permaculture Design Courses) on the island, which she also completed herself. She did her first permaculture design course 10 years ago under Starhawk, author and co-founder and co-teacher of the renowned Earth Activist Training courses, who teaches permaculture design with a grounding in spirit and a focus on organising and activism. Kat has since built her own eco dome which she lives in and has become one of the driving forces of permaculture on the island, committed to bringing its principles into our everyday lives.

Variety of topics to be covered

The course is open to all and primarily theoretical. It will give an overview of permaculture ethics, principles and approaches to challenges. There will be hands-on work, but emphasis will be put on learning the patterns and concepts that are applied in permaculture. The course is held in English, but if translation is required it can be arranged and volunteers for translation can contact the project. Weekend only workshop options are available.

Topics will include Principles of Natural Systems, Sustainable Design Methodologies, Patterns in Nature, Culture and Society, Grey Water Recycling, Natural Building Strategies, Wildlife Management and Biological Pest Control, Appropriate Technologies and Renewable Energies, Community Supported Agriculture and much more. At the end of the class, students engage in a group design project.

Picturesque venue

The venue is the new eco village project in Tris Elies, a quiet and beautifully situated village in the Troodos mountain area which aims to bring ideas and energy back to the village which has seen a great decline in its population. The course has been designed to support the people of the project to help make this first eco village in Cyprus a shining example of community spirit and ecological living.

“It is really exciting to be part of something that will make a difference and is contributing to a better future for all of us,” says coordinator Katerina.

Details can be obtained from the project’s Facebook page Ecovillage Tris Elies or via coordinator Katerina Constantinou at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 99414463.

As published in The Cyprus Weekly of July 24 2015 

Mary Anglberger

I’ve been travelling the world for over 20 years teaching English and am now taking time to follow my passion for photography and writing. I want to share all the things, events and people that have inspired and inspire me and spread those positive vibes all around.

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