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Five Benefits of a Permaculture Design for Your Home

By Tanner SagouspeRise Writer
Oct 15, 2019

The climate crisis is a global event ravaging the original home that once protected and provided for us. As droughts lengthen, crops fail, and devastating storms erase towns, it’s easy to feel distressed. But we are not hopeless.

What can be done at home to fight climate change? What can be done to provide more for your family in an uncertain time?

Permaculture design is right for any property, no matter how big or small. Rise has already published a series of articles about the principles of permaculture and its three core values. But what about the design process?

What Are the Benefits of Having a Permaculture Design at Home?

  1. Enhanced food security
  2. Time savings
  3. Improved resilience
  4. Ecosystem restoration, and
  5. Pride

Now, let's take a look at all these benefits!

1. Enhance Food Security

Why rely on stores with variable prices and risks of shortage or recall? It can be tricky buying food only to find out that you have to toss it because it fell to the back of the fridge, and you forgot about it.

Buying food has many steps and processes, regardless of whether it was grown on a plant or made in one. Any process has the potential to generate waste. The best way to cut down this waste is to increase the amount of food grown at home while decreasing what you purchase elsewhere.

You’re in charge of what you eat and where you get it. You know what nutrients went into the ground, what food you’ll have in season, and best of all, nothing beats the taste of freshly picked fruits and vegetables.

Sound enticing? A permaculture designer will help guide you through your property and notice the areas to enhance food production. They’ll consult with you about what foods you may be interested in and how much time you’re looking to invest in your garden’s “groceries.”

And don’t forget, when your yard is full of food, you’re going to have more than enough to suit your current needs. Talk with your permaculture designer about resources for preserving your harvest and extending that bounty into the winter months.

permaculutre rain barrel
Photo Credit: Samantha Forsberg

2. Save Time

We all live busy lives. Some of us work multiple jobs, while others rush to get children to school or activities. No matter what you do, the thought of adding more yard work or complicated home add-ons will turn most of us immediately away.

A permaculture designer can work with you on ways to cut down unnecessary work while increasing productivity. Little things can make a huge difference. For example, they know where to place a rain barrel to direct overflow into surrounding garden beds or where to place your herb spiral so it’ll get proper light.

Through the use of sectors and zones, they will create a design that flows naturally. If you’re going to be eating from your garden every day, why would you put it at the opposite end of the yard? If you want to line-dry your clothes, wouldn’t it be better to place the line in direct sun and where a cross breeze occurs?

The designer will give you some ideas on best utilizing every inch of your property, given your time requirements.

3. Improve Resilience

Choosing to have a permaculture design done on your property means that you are interested in instability in a time of growing uncertainty. We all know that there are plenty of things going wrong in our world, and we feel a deep sense of anxiety for many of us. 

While a permaculture designer may not help with your climate anxiety, they can help guide you on sustainable features your property may be able to utilize. In permaculture, the aim is to advise property owners along the creative path into earth stewardship. This means helping people learn to work with, rather than against nature, to create stability.

Permaculture was developed over 30 years ago to be a “persistent system that supports human existence” in a way that does not destroy our planet in the process. These practices are even more critical today in response to environmental degradation and, ultimately, the climate crisis.

Having this in mind, a designer will look at what elements are flowing through your property (water, sunlight, wind). They will explain how to capture them to make the most of their potential. Whether powering your house or ensuring your garden gets ample light to produce food, your designer is always looking for what is best for you and the planet.

permaculture ecosystems
Photo Credit: The Sourrou Farm

4. Restore Ecosystems

Permaculture was invented for the suburbs and the cities or other landscapes devoid of a diverse, natural ecosystem. Designers are taught to find use in the marginal regions of your property and seed life. It’s a way to help people grow food in their yards while also creating habitat for insects, food for local wildlife, and many more activities that occur commonly in nature.

The permaculture designer will examine various features of your landscape, ranging from placement in the watershed to solar aspects. They will guide you through what will grow best or which natural features can be enhanced. They will often give preference to native plants to help support your local ecosystem.

By restoring the ecosystem, you are helping create habitat for all species, both big and small. A recently published study revealed a decline of North American birds, with a staggering loss of 3 billion over 48 years. This coincides with insect populations' decline over time. By restoring local ecosystems on your property, you are helping rebuild our damaged world.

5. Feel Good

Having a permaculture design done for your home brings on a feeling of pride. You decided to make your property and your family more resilient to the uncertainties of our current climate crisis.

A detailed permaculture design looks at long-lasting natural systems. This means that your family can potentially have nutrient-rich food, clean water, and abundant natural resources for many years. A developed method can be passed down from generation to generation. Your children and their children can inherit not only a home with long-lasting memories but an ecological system that was designed to keep them sustained.

Even if you don't have children, the system you create could one day become the beacon of hope that someone else needs. By 2050, 143 million people will be forced from their homes due to climate change. Someone escaping the horrors of the future climate reality may feel safe because of the work you did to prepare this system today.

happy garden

With every plant you place in the ground and every vegetable you pick from the garden and not the shelves, you’re also reducing your footprint. Your perennial shrubs and trees pull carbon from the air and store it down into the ground. The food and renewable resources you grow on your property cut down on the number of products that are made and transported to stores. All of this can make anyone feel pretty good.

These few points only scratch the surface of what a permaculture system can do. Reach out to a permaculture designer near you to discuss how they can help get you started today. As the old Chinese proverb goes, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”

Disclaimer: This article does not constitute a product endorsement however Rise does reserve the right to recommend relevant products based on the articles content to provide a more comprehensive experience for the reader.Last Modified: 2021-07-02T12:25:05+0000
Tanner Sagouspe

Article by:

Tanner Sagouspe

Tanner Sagouspe has a Masters in Environmental Management and is a Permaculture Designer who promotes tackling the climate crisis at home.