Permaculture Design Course, March 18-30th 2013

This course is a unique opportunity to take a PDC training and be part of a newly emerging Permaculture movement in Romania, that seeks to value and preserve a more harmonious, ecological ways of life that are still part of the local heritage. Your participation will also help to develop a farm that is growing food to sustain the “Fountain of Hope” afterschool center and the “Familia AMURTEL” children’s home, both run in the nearby village of Panatau. The farm project also aims to offer work experience to young adults transitioning out of care towards independence.

The aim of this course is to give you the tools, enthusiasm and support to create true abundance in all areas of life (from food, energy, shelter to community, work and inner growth). You will learn how to observe and work with nature in order to design thoughtful, intentional systems that nourish eco-systems rather than exploiting them, and minimize wasteage.

PDC Permaculture Design Course is a  72 hour course and addressing key themes and core of permaculture.

This course is accredited by the Permaculture Association Britain, and is recognized by the Permaculture Research Institute worldwide, entitling the holder to use Permaculture in their professional work.  The certificate is a pre-requisite for becoming a licensed permaculture trainer.


The main ethos of permaculture is to mimic nature to create self sustaining systems, which require as few external inputs as possible to create diverse, healthy systems whilst nourishing all components of the system, be it plants, animals and people in a food growing system or staff, management, customers and earth’s resources, in a business.

Permaculture, is about creating a culture of permanence, where we all support each other and allow each other to flourish. The principals are based on a blend of ancient as well as new knowledge, ethics and common sense. The design process is logical, methodical, scientific and yet very imaginative and creative, and is therefore accessible for all to learn and apply.

What to expect:

The 12 day course will be in English, and conducted by Rakesh “Rootsman” Bhambri.

The course will start by discussing the way in which we live and establishing what is good and what needs to be changed in order to bring about a more resilient and sustainable future. We will look at peak oil and climate change, and what we can all personally do to help bring about a global change. We will look at existing solutions and explore where permaculture fits in, with the solutions it can offer for many of the world’s problems. Participants will be guided through how to observe nature,  yourself or any other complex system. We will explore a set of simple tools which can help us see patterns in nature so we can learn from nature and replicatethe same patterns that help nature to be so resilient  in our own designs.

We will cover the basic ethics of permaculture, which ensures what we design is beneficial to all humans, animals and mother earth. We will look at the principals, that help us ensure we get the maximum yield from each system. We will introduce several simple design methodologies, which can be applied to almost any type of design (from your day to day life or business to backyard food growing or a large scale farm).

 Throughout the course you will be making a personal design (which you can realistically put into practice after the course), as well as a group design, which could be of your own garden, a community space, a project, or something for the venue.

We will cover land surveying, including making maps and overlays, how to take soil samples, how to read the landscape. We will share with you tools for gathering community opinions, which can then be used to build designs that meet everyone’s needs.

To reinforce how the principals are put into practice we will have several hands on practicals, including plastering a cob wall, using local materials, which will lead on from a session on how to design a natural home. We will look at how to convert an orchard into a self-fertilising, low maintenance, high yield forest garden. We will make some small food growing plots, which will follow a session on how to design using companion planting, nutrient accumulators and plant guilds, which help to reduce the need for adding nutrients, continuous weeding or watering. We will make some water capturing systems which will follow on from a session on how to capture and reuse valuable energies, such as water, heat, sun, wind, etc. We will also have an option to explore either designing a water turbine, a solar water heater or a solar photovoltaic panel lighting system.

This is a life changing course. Most people will say how they see the world with different eyes after this course. This is how we will bring about a silent revolution. A revolution of individuals, based on ethics and the well-being of all, who act locally, think globally. We invite you to be part of this revolution.


The course will take place at the AMURTEL Poieni Farm near the town Patarlagele, Buzau County, in ROMANIA located 120 km from Bucharest and 50 km from Buzau.
The organic farm grows fruits and vegetables for AMURTEL’s nearby children’s home and after-school center, as well as providing vegetables through a Community Supported Agriculture setup with a group of consumers in Bucharest.

The course is residential, with two forms of accomodation available:
1. Accommodation in 2 collective dormitory rooms with (one with 2 bunk beds and one with 3 bunk beds) as space is limited to a total of 10 beds indoors, it will be given on a first come / first serve basis according to availability and order of registration for those who request it.
2. Accommodation in your own tent – those using tent accomodations will receive a 35 euro discount.

* If weather is not suitable for tents, accomodation will be possible at the Fountain of Hope after school center. Guests that will stay there the whole course, pay the full price, and must arrange to drive between the course and the center (approximately 20 minutes away by car)

* There is also a small, inexpensive hotel that is within walking distance of the farm, “Pensiunea Maria” (call +40742672945 to make reservations and enquire about prices)


The course will begin on Monday March 18th at 14,00 and will end on Saturday March 30th after lunch. There will be a one day break on March 24th. On that day, participants may do as they wish, but those that would like to stay at the farm on the break day are requested to make an extra contribution of 15 euros to cover food on that day.  If there is sufficient interest, it will be possible to organize a tour with a local guide to see a nearby monastery, ancient hermit caves, or a standing stone circle.

This course will have a duration of approximately 80 hours (allowing extra time for translation into Romanian).

We recommend advanced knowledge of English.

Who will be the teacher?

The teacher, Rakesh “Rootsman” Bhambri is a certified Permaculture Design instructor from the UK and has been teaching permaculture design courses in the UK, Croatia, India and Ireland.

How much does it cost?

Early registration (paid by February 14th):   € 495

Full price:  € 555

Romanians will receive a discount to encourage local participation:

Early registration for Romanians (by February 14th): 1090 RON

Full price for Romanians: 1300 RON

This price covers  the training materials, training, tent accomodation (own tent)  and 3 delicious vegetarian meals per day for the full 12 days of training.


Forest Gardening Weekend Workshop: 85 euros for participants in the Permaculture Design Course, 150 euros just for Forest Gardening (without the PDC)

March 24 (free day) – 15 euros if remaining on site

You may pay online with a credit or debit card or by bank transfer in euros (recommended within the EU) – details can be found at the following link:

Please be sure to specify on the bank transfer “Permaculture Course” and the participant’s name or names, if different from the person making the payment.

Before making your payment, please verify your enrollment and the sum to be paid by email (didi at or telephone +40744565252 .

Deadline for enrollments is March 1st.

* If there are insufficient enrollments to proceed, you will be fully reimbursed for any fees already paid

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