Earth Repair Corps
1483 County Road 311
McDade, TX 78650
During this Permaculture Design Course, participants will be introduced to the ethics, principles, and methods of Permaculture while learning how to design, create, and maintain agriculturally productive ecosystems and sustainable human settlements. View an Introduction to Permaculture video here.
This 72 hour intensive course is taught by experts within the fields of permaculture, regenerative agriculture, sustainable energy, water conservation, natural building, and more.
Come learn in this beautiful setting on the Edwards Plateau while cultivating a new community, create a comprehensive property design of your own, and gain the skills to build local markets for permaculture.
Located ~15 miles west of downtown Blanco and just downstream from the headwaters of the Blanco River, this family farm and permaculture campus offers a genuine and unique learning experience with abundant hands-on opportunity.
WEEKEND 1 – February 1-2 Introduction to Permaculture Design – Patterns in Nature – Climate – Methods of Design
WEEKEND 2 – February 22-23 Geography – Trees & their Energy Transactions – Water – Holistic Context Development
WEEKEND 3 – March 14-15 Soils – Earthworks – Surveying – Mapping
WEEKEND 4 – April 4-5 Small-Scale Animal Systems – Built Environment – Alternative energy – Permaculture Design for Zones 1 and 2
WEEKEND 5 – April 25-26 Permaculture Design for Zones 3 and 4 – Grazing Systems – Perennial Gardens – Agroforestry
WEEKEND 6 – May 16-17 Building a Market for Permaculture Design – Permablitz Organization – Sustainable Communities – Student Design Presentations & Graduation Ceremony
Interested in seeing what others have done with their design certification?
The primary instructor, Kirby Fry, started out his journey with a degree in Forestry Sciences from Texas A&M University and soon after was building tree nurseries, terraces, and planting fuelwood forests with the US Peace Corps in the Highlands of Guatemala. He worked in the field with Bill Mollison and Allan Savory for over 2 years at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose, Texas at “the top of the Hill Country”.
Today, Kirby works building houses, gardens, and sustainable design systems. Kirby believes that we should be building houses and landscapes that pay us to live in them, that we can give back more to the earth than we take from it in a lifetime, and that we can create agriculturally productive ecosystems for humans better than nature can.
Pete Van Dyck grew up under the shade of oak trees and woke to the sound of roosters crowing on a homestead south east of Oklahoma City. Pete was a competitive swimmer for 12 years, where his deep connection with water began. After graduating high school, he volunteered to serve in the United States Navy and underwent some of the most rigorous military training in the world at Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL School. After his service with the Navy, Pete decided to pursue a lifestyle dedicated to land restoration and prioritization of the health of the land, health of the water, and the health of humans.
Using the GI Bill, Pete attended a heavy equipment operator and construction course where he learned how to safely operate equipment and run job sites. Pete has attended many land planning & farm design design courses with world-renowned designers including Darren Doherty, Geoff Lawton, and Mark Shepard. He has also volunteered his services with Earth Repair Corps to farmers and homesteaders all over central Texas, helping them to conserve soil, water, and money. Pete runs a small business that specializes in soil and water conservation that has worked and consulted on over 60 sites around Texas in just 3 years. Now he lives in Blanco, Texas building a farm that will demonstrate how to regeneratively manage land while making a sustainable profit.
Jim O’Donnell will be a guest instructor during Weekend 2. For over 30 years, Jim has combined his love of teaching, biology, and environmental stewardship to help protect the Black-capped Vireo and endangered Golden-cheeked Warbler in Central Texas. He was instrumental in setting aside the 214-acre tract of land that is now known as the Vireo Preserve, which once supported the largest concentration of Black-capped Vireos in Travis County. As a result of his efforts and knowledge of the endangered songbirds and their ecosystems, Jim was appointed to the Biological Advisory Team that provided the basis and support for the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve, a system of preserves established under a federal Endangered Species Act permit to protect multiple endangered and rare species in Travis County.
Jim has spent the last 10 years designing and implementing habitat restoration on the Vireo Preserve, which is now owned and managed by the City of Austin as part of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve. Jim uses his knowledge of the species, plants, permaculture, and teaching to implement regenerative habitat restoration projects with a community of volunteers to benefit a variety of native Texas ecosystems. He regularly gives presentations to numerous state and local groups on this topic.
Travis & Mandy Krause will join us in Weekend 5 during the Grazing Systems portion of the class to discuss their work using regenerative grazing practices. The Krause’s are founders of Parker Creek Ranch, a regenerative agriculture business that uses a systems approach to management to support ecosystem function through the production of grass-fed beef and pasture-raised poultry.
Specializing in research and education, Mandy is a driven land steward and passionate about relationships between agriculture production, wildlife and natural resource conservation, and people. She has over 10 years of experience as an environmental educator and works to connect people to nature through farm tours, education programs for youth, landowner field days, and train-the-trainer workshops which has included a SARE Professional Development Project “Farming for the Future” Adopting Sustainable Agriculture Practices.
Barbara Lamar will join us in Weekend 6 during the Building a Market for Permaculture section of the course to discuss financing strategies.
Ever since her first “real” job with a large company after graduating from university, one of Barbara’s missions has been to encourage people to start their own small business or work for a small, locally owned business. She is a lawyer and CPA with MPA and JD degrees from UT Austin.
She has been helping people start and operate businesses for more than 30 years. Barbara has been using Permaculture design principles on her land since the 1980’s and encourages clients to use triple bottom line accounting (People, Planet, Profits) in evaluating their businesses.