PDC intensive course for February 2022!

Intensive Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course

Intensive PDC course with Sílvia Floresta

The only portuguese permaculturist which completed the course in the highly regarded Permaculture Research Institute, in Australia

Information about the course below

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This Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course is an intensive immersion in the universe of Permaculture. This course is designed to support students to develop an ecological language, an understanding of the basic principles of ecological and regenerative design, with the application of this knowledge to redesign communities and human settlements according to the rules of nature.

The main goal of this course is to develop effective design skills through the practical application of knowledge and tools. This is the opportunity to learn by participating in a true community design process.

The Course follows the traditional format of 13 days (intensive), including 1 free day (created by Bill Mollison), combining practical (40%), theoretical, field trips, interactive games, dynamic activities, sharing experiences, community experience and much more. This format allows you to dive into design principles in Permaculture, which will be applied and presented by students in the final design work. To qualify for the certificate, participants will have to attend 80% of the course.

This course builds on the 14 chapters of the book Permaculture: A Designers Manual by Bill Mollison. Some of the topics to be covered in this course:

  • Permaculture Principles and Ethics
  • Read the landscape. Observation of Nature’s Patterns and Cycles
  • Principles of ecosystems, climate and biogeography applied to Permaculture
  • Design Principles: Analysis process, zones, efficient energy plan, etc.
  • Resources identification. Water in the surrounding environment, collection and conservation of water, solar energy, etc.
  • Building healthy soil: base of soil structure, texture, etc. Strategies for soil improvement using green manures, compost, mulch, erosion control
  • Establishing a Permaculture Garden, food forests – how to select and maintain these systems. “How to produce more food in a small space” (bio-intensive method)
  • Seed collection and its conservation
  • Wind/fire barriers design
  • Healthy housing/shelter: selecting a place for the house. Non-toxic materials. Natural building systems
  • Appropriate technologies: Dry toilets, solar dehydrators, clay ovens and stoves (Cob), alternative energies, material recycling
  • Introduction to the design of self-suffiecient communities and eco-villages. Group organization systems. Alternative economy

Frequently Asked Questions

If your question is not here, please contact us at info@festanca.org

About Sílvia Floresta

“The best legacy I can leave to my children is a healthy planet.”

— Sílvia Floresta, Permaculturist


Since she was a child, Sílvia has had a huge passion for country life, for plants, seeds, animals and people! She studied botany and soil regeneration.

She worked for a few years in the Sintra Natural Park where she learned and developed numerous skills, from plant propagation, seed collection and conservation, recognition of pests and diseases in plants (trees), historical gardening, handling gardening machines and agriculture. She worked with 900 plant species from the flora of the region (Sintra), where half are Mediterranean species and about 10% are plants from various regions of the world, only found in specific areas. The rest are endangered plants that find the conditions to proliferate in the Sintra mountains.

One of her main jobs is the collection and conservation of seeds of highly threatened species. In 2008, she founded the environmental education project – Permaculture in Schools and has since worked with several schools. She was actively involved in various community garden projects, and voluntarily in free seeds campaigns, participating in the collection of traditional varieties from farmers.

The trip continued to Australia, at the Permaculture Research Institute, where she studied Earthworks in permaculture (movements or earthworks), humanitarian aid projects in permaculture, teacher training in permaculture, urban permaculture, seed collection and conservation, soil biology, composting, natural fertilisers, biodynamics, forestry, greenhouses, animal systems, food forests, urban gardens, organic farming, design in ecological architecture, energy systems, aquaculture, community building, and empowered fundraising.

She develops several courses in Portugal and in other countries with other professors. She has a huge passion for seeds and she believes the future of traditional varieties is their preservation and freedom for all seeds! “The best legacy I can leave to my children is a healthy planet!” She develops design, consultancy and training in permaculture, and develops the project Ecoaldeia do Vale, which aims to regenerate a typical Portuguese village.