Permaculture Design Course

Presented by Julia & Charles Yelton
Sunday, July 6 – Sunday, July 20, 2014
Tuition: $900.00

Program Highlights

• Instruction from Permaculture pioneers with international and regional experience

• Significant hands-on project components in our 77 acres of hilly meadow and wooded land and field trips around the Catskill region

• Daily yoga, meditation and kirtan in unique ashram setting

• Organic vegetarian meals

• 110+ hours of instruction

• Upon completion of program, receipt of Permaculture Design Certificate from Humustacia Permaculture

Course Description

This course integrates the practical, sustainable living skills of permaculture and yoga. Learn how to observe and interact with the patterns and rhythms of nature to create beautiful, abundant and resilient gardens, homes and communities. Learn how to observe and interact with the mind and body to cultivate radiant health, joy, peace of mind and deep empowerment within. Together, permaculture and yoga's holistic solutions enable us to begin to live in peace and harmony with our environment and all of our relationships, while at the same time addressing the world's most pressing issues with clarity and creativity.

Permaculture Certification Course Video

All are welcome. Prior experience with yoga and/or permaculture is not necessary.

Permaculture Topics Covered

Participants will earn a Permaculture Design Certificate from Humustacia Permaculture and explore the following topics through lecture, experiential exercises, group discussion, hands-on implementation, field observation, field trips ,and student-led design projects. Completion of a group design project is required for certification.

• Ethics and Principles of Permaculture
• Permaculture vs. Organic and Bio-dynamic Farming
• Soils, Composting, Soil Rehabilitation
• Food systems, Four Season Gardening, Wild Food
• Animal integration into the Homestead
• Wildfire Prevention, Cover Cropping and Fertilizers
• Keyline Design, Ponds and Aquaculture
• Map and Topography, Design Layout
• Property Design, Zones and Sectors
• Creating a Forest Garden
• Timber Forestry, Coppicing
• Alternative Energies for a home, community and village
• Alternative Building Techniques
• Communities and Village Design and International Communities
• Team building, Group Dynamics and Project Management
• and so much more...

Yoga Topics Covered

Daily yoga and meditation provides a unique opportunity to experience the connection of personal well-being with the social and ecological health of the world around us. During the daily satsang programs, ashram staff lead short presentations on yoga and Vedanta philosophy, exploring how to develop a personal spiritual practice that supports Earthcare and a conscious permaculture practice that supports spiritual evolution. Some Yoga topics include:

• Five Points of Yoga (exercise, breathing, relaxation, diet, positive thinking & meditation)• Science of the Gunas (qualities within nature)
• Four Paths of Yoga
• Significance and effects of mantras, music and chanting
• Raja Yoga, also known as Ashtanga Yoga
• The three bodies (physical, astral, causal)
• The Koshas & Upadhis
• Chakras

Site Features

• 77 acres of hilly meadow and woodland in the Catskill Mountains
• Revived orchards and new food forest plantings
• Expanding organic annual garden
• Ponds, nature trails
• Wood-burning Russian Banya Sauna

Hands-On Project Components

• Contour and Swale design
• Water catchment and passive irrigation
• Hoophouse construction
• Natural building and Earthen plasters
• Passive solar heating
• and so much more....

Registration and Fees

Course tuition is $900 + accommodations 

Tuition includes class materials and field trips. Accommodations include organic vegetarian meals, meditation instruction, Yoga philosophy lectures, and Hatha yoga asana classes.

Please call our registration office to reserve your space (845) 436-6492.


Arrival and Departure Information

Arrival - Friday 2:00pm
Departure - Sunday 12:00 Noon (room check out )


Julia & Charles Yelton

Julia and Charles Yelton have been traveling, teaching and living Permaculture for the last 19 years. Julia is a master gardener and skilled landscape designer with a background in architectural ceramics. Charles teaches design engineering and management skills. 

Both studied and practiced permaculture at Crystal Waters Permaculture Village in Queensland, Australia for 3 1/2 years and served on the faculty of the Institute for Sustainable Agriculture of Nepal before starting to teach around the world. Together, they have taught, designed, and implemented numerous regenerative whole living systems in India, Bali, Ireland, Guatemala, France, Spain, Morocco, Greece, Egypt, UK, Scotland, Wales, and Canada.

In 2007, they established a community food forest at a drug-rehabilitation center in Cyprus, drawing participation from both Greek and Turkish residents. Since 2009, they have been developing a demonstration center and advanced permaculture design programs at the International Sustainable Living Institute in Caccamo, Sicily.

In the US, after spending a year designing an eco-village in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina, the Yeltons established an affordable, sustainable, energy-efficient demonstration home and four-season gardens at the Sustainable Living Center at Humustacia Gardens in Whitefield, ME. Their education programs soon earned college-accreditation through the University of Maine (U-Me) and University of New Hampshire. In 2007, they spearheaded the U-Me initiative to green the campus and were named Still Water Research Fellows in 2007 and 2008. From 2008 to 2009, they were the first Co-Directors of Permaculture Education at the Newforest Institute in Brooks, ME, where they established overall site designs and numerous workshops and courses, including timber-earth "Hobbit House" construction.

Julia and Charles strive to 'teach by doing' and are committed to establishing demonstration sites so that people can experience first-hand the benefits of holistic ecological design. They emphasize hands-on experience in their teaching and also incorporate spirituality and cosmology as an integral part of their courses.

"When we first began teaching Permaculture years ago, we realized that we needed to address the nurturing of the individual who lived in a particular system and for this we added zone zero-zero to the design system. Our work during the last five years has taken on a deepening, with the understanding of the true meaning of ecology, that is the relationship of everything to everything. This puts a new light on the way we present the edge effect, where the abundance of all life is greatly magnified. 

We acknowledge ourselves to be composed of mind, body and spirit and when we begin to study our ecology of being, our connectedness to all of nature, allowing us to enter a profoundly spiritual zone, a zone beyond the boundaries. This zone actually is the connection that brings all aspects of the design system full circle. It also holds the unseen spaces between the crossover edges where all of nature's mysteries can be uncovered. It is an endless edge of self discovery and our relationship to our world, a true cosmology. Embracing this zone in our teaching fulfills our need for a completeness, a oneness that may of us are searching for." - Julia and Charles Yelton

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