Learn the practical principies and techniques behind maintaining and benefeting from healthy and productive soil in a ecolofically sound way! Our Compos and Soil courses make technical concepts clear, so you can learn hot to arrange, prepare, and build up the right kind of soil for each project.

Soil & Garden Beds

Improve the quality of the soil on your property and learn how to build garden beds!

Soil is a lot more complex than many people think. In this course, we take an in-depth look at its constituent parts and its characteristics. You’ll learn about how soil is formed, how it develops over time, the particles that determine its structure, and the various chemical elements that are present in it.

Regardless of the natural make-up of your soil, this course will also give you the practical strategies you need to be able to modify it so that your plants have the best growing medium in which to prosper. You’ll discover ways to improve the soil’s structure, how to enhance moisture flow, how to prevent erosion, and how to promote microorganism activity.

This course also gives you a thorough understanding of the various types of garden beds that you can use on your property. You’ll learn how to analyze your site to determine the most suitable forms of bed, and will then be given the instructions, hints and tips you need to create each type, and to maintain it so that it remains a productive space giving you lots of yield.

Compost

Create your own organic compost – one of the most powerful materials in permaculture!

This course explains how all the necessary elements that make for a productive compost pile work together, with a thorough analysis of how material, water, oxygen, and temperature interact, and how modifying any of them influences the way that compost develops. You’ll discover the importance of the right levels of air and moisture for a healthy pile, as well as insight on some of the common problems that can affect the development of your compost, and how to prevent or ameliorate them.

You will also be given the instructions, hints and tips you need to start, maintain and use your own compost pile. We guide you through the many different materials that make suitable additions to a pile, and point out those that should be kept out. We also cover how material needs to be prepared, layered and treated as it makes its transformation into compost.

We also include information on the two main methods of creating compost – hot and cold – and the factors that will influence your choice of strategy, as well as hints and tips on siting and maintaining your pile. You will also learn the best techniques for telling when compost is ready to use, and how to apply it to your garden beds for maximum effectiveness.

Mulch

Make mulch a key part of your permaculture design to improve soil and maximize yield!

Mulch can be the perfect medicine when it comes to rehabilitating damaged and degraded land. It differs from organic compost, but they can both be used in combination.

Having completed this course, you’ll be able to analyze the factors that will influence the choice of mulch material, such as local climate conditions, the individual make-up of the soil on your property, and the types of plants you wish to grow in your garden beds. You’ll also appreciate the unique characteristics that a variety of different organic and inorganic mulches have.

You will also discover a simple technique for combining several different organic mulch materials into an effective and energy-efficient layered mulch that supports plant growth without the need for the gardener to dig the garden bed.

The course also contains comprehensive instructions on applying mulch so that it works most effectively depending on the season, the stage of the cultivation cycle, and climate factors. As well as hints and tips on preparing your garden beds for the application of mulch, you’ll learn how to add mulch around trees to avoid damaging them and inhibiting their growth, as well as understand the optimal depths of organic mulch to use for both seedlings and mature plants.