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House & Home Sustainable Living

Building Your Permaculture Property

A Five-Step Process to Design and Develop Land

by (author) Rob Avis, Takota Coen & Michelle Avis

foreword by Geoff Lawton

New Society Publishers
Initial publish date
May 2021
Sustainable Living, Horticulture, Sustainable Development, Landscape, Sustainable Agriculture
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2021
    List Price

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The best person to design the property of your dreams is you. This book gives you the tools to succeed.

Building Your Permaculture Property offers a revolutionary holistic method to overcome overwhelm in the complex process of resilient land design. It distills the authors' decades of experience as engineers, farmers, educators, and consultants into a five-step process complete with principles, practices, templates, and workflow tools to help you:

  • Clarify your vision, values, and resources
  • Diagnose your land and resources for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats
  • Design your land and resources to meet your vision and values
  • Implement the right design to enhance your strengths and improve your weakest resource
  • Establish benchmarks to monitor the sustainability and success of your development.

When designing a regenerative permaculture property, too many land stewards suffer from option paralysis, a lack of integrated holistic design, fruitless trial-and-error attempts, wasted money, and the frustration that results from too much information and no context.

Building Your Permaculture Property is the essential guide for everyone looking to cut through the noise and establish an ecologically regenerative, financially sustainable, enjoyable, and thriving permaculture property, anywhere in the world.

About the authors

Rob Avis, P.Eng is co-owner and operator of Adaptive Habitat, a leading edge property design firm for resilient homes, acreages, and farms and Verge Permaculture, a globally recognized award-winning education business. He has over 10 years of experience in project management, ecological design, and sustainable technologies. He lives in Calgary, Alberta.

Rob Avis' profile page

Takota Coen is a permaculture educator, Red Seal Carpenter, second-generation organic farmer, and co-owner and operator of Coen Farm, an award-winning 250-acre permaculture farm that produces nutrient-dense raw-milk-fed pork, grass-fed beef, pastured eggs, forest garden berries, and herbal teas. He lives near Edmonton, Alberta.


Takota Coen's profile page

Michelle Avis, P.Eng is co-owner and operator of Adaptive Habitat, a leading edge property design firm for resilient homes, acreages, and farms and Verge Permaculture, a globally recognized award-winning education business. She has over 10 years of experience in project management, ecological design, and sustainable technologies. She lives in Calgary, Alberta.


Michelle Avis' profile page

Geoff Lawton is a world renowned permaculture consultant, designer and teacher who has undertaken thousands of jobs teaching, consulting, designing, administering, and implementing across six continents and in over 50 countries around the world. Lawton is based at Zaytuna Farm in NSW, Australia.


Geoff Lawton's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"As well as being a valuable tool for individuals in their permaculture journeys, Building Your Permaculture Property represents another step towards permaculture being recognized beyond its widespread misconception of being simply a fashionable form of organic gardening. It highlights the need for permaculture design thinking in creating resilient, regenerative, landscapes and communities. Through this work, Rob, Michelle, and Takota make a valuable contribution to the ongoing evolution of permaculture thinking and action."
David Holmgren, permaculture co-originator

"A book to take the reader from thinking into action, Building Your Permaculture Property offers an excellent addition to permaculture theory and provides a key resource for all designers. By confronting and working through real, thorny, and often invisible human and landscape problems — a terrain in which they have earned their share of cuts and bruises — the authors slice through the Gordian knot that stops most people from realizing their home and nature visions through a powerful design system. Their vibrant and positive attitude yoked to psychological insight harnesses clean language and a keen focus on process to cut a neat furrow of systematic thinking through the complexity of living systems assessment, design, and management. Offering a window on digital design tools, clever illustrations, and examples from the demanding world of cold prairie farming, the authors have created a well-marked pathway for the advanced learner to reach professional outcomes."
Peter Bane, executive director, Permaculture Institute of North America, author, The Permaculture Handbook

"A life well-lived includes leaving the land better than we found it. This fivestep design manual jumpstarts that journey to a foregone conclusion, laying out a thoughtful process for making permaculture principles your own. Every farm, every ranch, and every homestead benefit from thinking deeper about how human intent engages with the places we're blessed to call home. Restoring integrity to degraded ground is our primal mission now as a species. Restoring diversity means planting many more trees. Restoring ecological posterity begins with listening to the heart of the mother... and then reading this book."
Michael Phillips, Holistic Orchard Network, author, The Holistic Orchard

"A fresh, integrative, and holistic perspective on how to orientate oneself to the process of establishing your dreams and visions on the land. Designing and managing a farm that can build soil, create amazing food products, and sustain the farmer financially is possible anywhere; and yet it is the clarity of our context and decision-making and our attitudinal responses to design and management that largely underlie success. If you are dreaming of starting out on the land, this book will be a useful companion that will help you clarify your own approach to success, and help you navigate complexity with confidence."
Richard Perkins, author, Regenerative Agriculture, owner, Ridgedale Farm AB and Making Small Farms Work AB

"If you are serious about designing a permaculture property, this book has to be in your toolkit. The authors offer an accessible and current guide to the complexity of good design based on years of practical experience."
Morag Gamble, Permaculture Education Institute

"Rob, Michelle, and Takota have put a pair of glasses on something that is often blurry in permaculture design: process. Their step-by-step process from beginning to end is exceptionally useful, along with Takota's story which proves the process through a case study of a well-functioning, finely-tuned permaculture farm. Interwoven with a good amount of philosophy and detail, Building Your Permaculture Property is a needed read for anyone who is serious about developing their property through a permaculture design."
Nicholas Burtner, founder and director, The School of Permaculture

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