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Maya Mountain Research Farm
Maya Mountain Research Farm
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2 miles up river, San Pedro Columbia, Toledo, BZ
630 4386
Climate zone:
Wet/Dry Tropical

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Maya Mountain Research Farm

Maya Mountain Research Farm

San Pedro Columbia, BZ

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Advanced Permaculture Design Course, Maya Mountain Research Farm, San Pedro Columbia, Toledo, Belize

Project: Maya Mountain Research Farm

Posted by Christopher Nesbitt about 12 years ago

Advanced Permaculture Design Course will focus on agroforestry and perennial production models

Food security through biodiversity

Advanced Permaculture Design Course; 

Agroforestry and Systems Design on the Permaculture Farm

Maya Mountain Research Farm

Belize, Central America


March 4-10, 2012

 Contact Christopher Nesbitt [email protected] for info or an application.  http://www.mmrfbz.org/Advanced_Permaculture_Design_Course.html 

Perennial farming systems including agroforestry can sequester carbon while meeting human needs and increasing ecosystem health. This training will focus on design, establishment and management of agroforestry and perennial farming systems.  The course will focus in depth on this sub-section of permaculture and include hands-on practice and design exercises.

 After taking a permaculture design course you may be asking “what next?”. There is a world of further exploration and learning ahead. This is an opportunity to take your initial understandings and go deeper in specific topics in design, site planning, agroforestry, perennial polycultures, and water systems.  Through intensive field work, field classes, and projects at the Maya Mountain Research Farm, a 23 year old- permaculture and agroforestry site in Southern Belize, we’ll deepen the learning of systems and strategies in a design training atmosphere. Those who already have a Permaculture Design Certificate can choose to take this class as an Advanced Permaculture Design Course and gain an Advanced Design Certificate.

  Course Format:

In the seven days of the course we will be actively engaging with the land, learning how the agroforestry systems operate and how the educational facility functions. In teams we will develop design options for the site after understanding the water, access, food and materials flows, cultural and historical connections, and production and management goals.


We will review the basic types of perennial farming systems, including tree cropping, perennial polycultures, silvopasture and other crop-livestock integrated systems, coppice, and support elements from contour hedgerows to green corrals. Perennial crops will be addressed, including an inventory of no-till perennial staple crops of the world. Case studies of working perennial market farms from both cold and tropical climates will provide inspiration, lessons, and models for mimicry.

Course Teachers: Jono Neiger and Eric Toensmeier

Dates: March 4-10, 2012 at Maya Mountain Research Farm a tropical agroforestry center in Southern Belize.

Cost: $700.  $600 early bird special, if paid before January 22nd, 6 weeks ahead.  Includes course, food, and lodging. Travel expenses are not included.


Focus: The course will focus on the seasonally wet tropics with principles and practices that can be applied to other climate zones. Training will focus on design process, site planning, and agroforestry applications such as tree crops, polycultures, succession planting, integration of animals etc. The APDC is open to Permaculture Design Course graduates and others with on-the-ground experience in permaculture and agroforestry. Graduates will gain an Advanced Design Certificate.


Specific Topics:

-        Design process

-        Site planning

-        Design for site integration of water, soil, buildings, access, food production, habitat

-        Perennial polyculture design

-        Livestock integration

-        Agroforestry and commercial scale food forestry

-        Regenerative enterprise planning: budgets, marketing and more for development of

         permaculture businesses

-        Carbon sequestering agriculture

-        Perennial staple crops of the world and other promising useful species

-        Water systems


Eric Toensmeier has studied useful plants and food forestry since 1990. He is the author of Perennial Vegetables and co-author of Edible Forest Gardens with Dave Jacke. Both books have received multiple awards. Eric’s current research is on perennial farming practices that fight climate change by capturing carbon. Eric managed the 30-acre Nuestras Raices urban farm site as an incubator farm, assisting aspiring immigrant and refugee farmers to start their own operations. He is also an experienced farm business trainer, including co-developing the Exploring the Small Farm Dream course, now taught in eight U.S. states and three Canadian provinces. His articles and videos can be viewed atwww.perennialsolutions.org.


Jono Neiger synthesizes his diverse expertise in permaculture design, conservation biology & restoration ecology to create productive and integrated landscapes. Working as collaborator, teacher, and guide, Jono empowers individuals, communities and organizations to understand and steward their land and landscape through design. He is principal at Regenerative Design Group (www.regenerativedesigngroup.com), faculty at the Conway School of Landscape Design (www.csld.edu), board president of the Permaculture Institute of the Northeast (www.thepine.org), and stewards his homestead, Hickory Garden, as well as Brook’s Bend Farm in Massachusetts


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