What is permaculture?

Permaculture was founded in the late 1970s by two Australians, Bill Mollison and David Holmgren.  Permaculture is a design science, like architecture, which addresses issues of food and energy security through thoughtful examination of human and natural patterns.  Permaculture utilizes a whole systems approach to design, weaving together inputs and outputs of system elements to develop a resilient web of relationships and functions.  Permaculture gardens are modeled on local ecosystems and provide many passive functions to reduce the need for human labor and management.


The word “permaculture” is a contraction of ‘permanent’ and ‘culture’ (originally ‘agriculture’).  While the organic garden is a central focus, permaculture design incorporates all aspects of our local ecology and community.  Check out the whole systems design mindmap below.


Mississippi Ecological Design:

Started in 2011 by Benjamin Koltai and Daniel Doyle, Mississippi Ecological Design contributes knowledge and creative energy to benefit North Mississippi residents and households, farms, businesses, and organizations.  Observation and thoughtful design are small steps taken towards solving many of the problems, both local and global, that we face as individuals, as communities and as a culture when dealing with our relationships to the land and our environment.

Benjamin KoltaiBenjamin and Lydia Koltai have been growing gardens in Mississippi since 2009.  We both studied permaculture at the Regenerative Design Institute in Bolinas, CA.  We live in Yocona community, near Oxford, in Lafayette County, MS, where we grow a garden homestead with our children Nisa, Yeshaiah, Violet, and Willow.

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