A Foundation to the Diploma

Certificate In Applied Permaculture Design

A new residential permaculture design and sustainable smallholding training. Leading to the Certificate in Applied Permaculture Design, certified by the Permaculture Association (Britain). This course is especially suitable for smallholders working towards sustainable and regenerative management or people looking to access land or become a permaculture design consultant. It leads to a quality-assessed, internationally recognised qualification in permaculture design, valuable both on a standalone basis or as a first step towards the full Permaculture Diploma. It is also suitable for students who have already started their diploma. 

29th April – 5th May 2024 : Keela Permaculture Farm, Fundao, Central portugal

Homesteading and Advanced Permaculture Design

Participants who successfully complete two assessed designs will be awarded the Foundation Certificate in Applied Permaculture Design, a new post-PDC qualification awarded by the Permaculture Association of Britain within its internationally recognised diploma training programme. During this residential program you will complete one Design onsite with our certified  Diploma tutor Tom Henfrey

If you wish to receive the certificate you will complete this from home after the course. Please read the bottom of this page for more info

Attendance is open to anyone who has already completed their PDC, at Keela or elsewhere. 

Permaculture Design Course Portugal

Who is this course for?

You want to take the next step on your permaculture learning journey

You are currently doing a diploma and wish to complete one of your designs with us

You are looking for land, or already have land, and are dreaming of creating your own permaculture smallholding

You want to strengthen your repertoire of practical skills in sustainable land management

You are interested in the Permaculture Diploma but not yet sure if you can commit to the full training

You have already decided to take the diploma, or perhaps already started, and want to get yourself off to a flying start

You are interested in training as a design consultant, in order to help others realise their permaculture dreaming

You want to deepen your understanding of permaculture and skill in permaculture design

What to expect?

  • Daily classes on permaculture design theory and technique
  • Individual and group work sessions for independent work on your designs, with support available from a tutor
  • Daily demonstration and/or practical sessions with the working permaculture systems at Keela Permaculture Farm
  • Practical classes include Grafting, Fruit Tree Pruning and Agroforesty
  • Individual and/or group tutorials during the week
  • Three yoga classes during the week
  • Three organic meals per day, including freshly-harvested organic farm produce
  • Individual follow-up tutorials to support completion of your designs 

Combine with our PDC

For those who have not completed a PDC, join the PDC course that takes place dfirectly before it and do both courses combined for a €100 discount. You can also join us for a PDC course at othere times of the year

The PDC course is two weeks and cost €700. The advanced permaculture design course is €400 and you get €100 discount if you take both courses.

Spring 2024 PDC

14th April 2024 - followed by a foundation in permaculture course

Summer 2024 PDC

16th June – followed by optional Natural Building course

15th September 2024 – followed by optional Food Forest course

This course is certified by the Permaculture Association UK

Video from our Summer 2023 PDC

Permaculture Design Course Portugal

Your Permaculture Design Course hosts and Teachers

Tom Henfrey

Certified Diploma Tutor

Tom is a co-teacher at Keela Yoga Farm’s Permaculture Design Courses. He is the only certified Permaculture Diploma tutor in Portugal. He is an author of various permaculture and ecology books and has 20 years of experience in Permaculture and Ecology. Tom co-leads the Diploma course at Keela Yoga Farm and guest teaches at some of our PDC courses. Visit his profile

Laurence Manchee

PDC Teacher

Co-founder of Keela Yoga Farm. Laurence is certified by the Permaculture Association to teach certified PDCs. He is a speaker at agriculture fairs, an author in Permaculture Magazine and leads Agroforestry, Permaculture Design and Natural Building Courses.

What our past students have say

Google and Facebook Reviews

Course Costs

  • €400 residential (includes 3 meals and yoga)
  • €300 non-residential (includes lunch only)

Certificate costs

You do not need to pay this is you do not want the certificate or you have your own tutor.
  • €100 for the follow up tutorials, assesments and induction. Read more at the bottom of this page.
  • €40 for the Permaculture Association Diploma Membership and official certificate

Accommodation Options

  • Free – your tent or caravan
  • €150 per caravan rental (with bedding)
  • €100 per person for Tent or Tip rental (with bedding)

Interns & Volunteers & Staff

What is included in the course

  • 2 Permaculture Design theory classes per day
  • 2 Design sessions per day to get your project completed with assistance from your to help with your designs
  • Group design work on eachothers designs
  • 1 Practical, demo or tour of permaculture related activities at Keela Permaculture Farm per day
  • Practical workshops will include fruit tree pruning, grafting, market gardening and advanced compost worm farming
  • 3 yoga classes through the week
  • 3 organic meals per day, freshly harvested from the farm
  • Post course feedback on designs if not completed during the course
  • If you are taking the certificate:
    • Induction on Zoom pre-course
    • Tutor session with Diploma tutor post course
    • Second design assessment post course

Certificate in Applied Permaculture Design

If you would like to receive the certificate please read this text

The Certificate in Applied Permaculture Design is a new advanced qualification administered by the Permaculture Association (Britain). It’s intended to bridge the gap between the PDC, where most people begin their permaculture training, and the Diploma in Applied Permaculture Design, which typically takes two years or more. The Certificate can be taken as a foundation for the Diploma, or on a standalone basis.

To achieve your Certificate, in addition to attending the residential training there are a few further steps you’ll need to take:

Register as an apprentice in the Permaculture Association’s Diploma programme via this form, naming Tom Henfrey as your personal tutor. This requires a monthly subscription, which for registered course participants is at a discounted rate of £9 per month, for a minimum of four months. We’ll send you a discount code when you sign up for the course and pay your deposit. Payment options are direct debit from any UK bank account, or Paypal for international payments.

Attend the 2-hour per-course induction event, which will take place online between 2 and 3 weeks before the course. It’s much better if you can attend live, but we’ll also record the session for anyone who can’t make it.

Complete two separate designs that meet the diploma assessment criteria (see the Diploma Criteria Guide and Design Assessment Form at the bottom of this page). Your choice of design projects is up to you. They can be from your own life or work, or you can choose from a range of onsite projects. The course tutors will provide whatever guidance you need in order to decide.

We expect that during the course itself you’ll be able to get one design close to completion, and another sketched out and ready to develop further. You’ll then finish off both designs as follow-up, ideally within four months of your initial registration (about three months following the course itself).

Follow up Tutorials

To enable completion and assessment of your designs, you’ll receive follow-up tutorial support from Tom. The course fee includes an hour-long live Design Support Tutorial, plus a further two hours for remote assessment of your two designs. If you are already registered for the diploma and prefer to take these tutorials with your existing tutor, we’ll deduct the relevant sum from the course fee.

If you require any further tutorial support, this will be charged according to the standard hourly rate set out in the Diploma Fees Guide, or a concessionary rate agreed in advance.

Once your two designs are signed off, you’ll receive a digital certificate from the Permaculture Association. Congratulations!




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Permaculture Design Course Portugal

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