Standard Permaculture Design Process

Our Standard Permaculture Design Process: we custom design and build according to your needs and goals, as well the land’s special characteristics. These include its specific climate, soil, water, slope, plants and more.  Below is an overview of our design process.


1.    Initial design consultation

A member of our design team visits the site to meet you in order to understand the project needs and goals and to assess resources and potential challenges associated with the site. Typically, one hour is all that is needed for this meeting, although larger projects could benefit from additional time. The cost of this meeting is $100/ hour, and the first hour of that fee is reimbursed if a design proposal or installation over $3500 is agreed upon. Should you decide to move forward with the design process, you will receive a design questionnaire, which will help refine your goals, ultimate landscape vision, and desired design elements. From this questionnaire and meeting with you, we formulate a design proposal tailored to your project, budget, and needs. To get started, fill out this consultation form and we’ll schedule a meeting with one of our experienced design consultants.

2.    Design Proposal

A design proposal lays out the scope of work to be done by the design team, which typically includes four components: 1) Base Map/Site Analysis, 2) Conceptual Master Plan (draft), 3) Plant List and Zone Map, and 4) Meetings. More components may be added depending on the project scope. Once an agreement is met regarding the design scope, we request a signed copy of the proposal and the specified deposit amount. (Photo: 1_Sample Initial Design around this area) Base map: A base map provides key information on existing structures, land forms and other site characteristics. If one doesn’t already exist, we can provide you with an estimate to create one either in-house or with our close partner organization. If one does exist, please share it with the design team.

3.    Design intake meeting

Once the scope of work is agreed upon, the design team meets with you on-site to review the questionnaire and further explore your vision and dream for the land. This meeting typically lasts 1-2 hours depending on the size of your property.

4.    Land assessment/ site analysis

Our site assessment begins with thoughtful observation of the natural energy flows, such as air movement, water flows, existing animal paths, fire corridors, view sectors, soil types, and human access needs. Careful observation reveals site-specific patterns, problems, and important resources critical to the design process. This site visit also allows the design team to get any needed measurements and, more generally, to understand the constraints and advantages of the property.

5.    Landscape Concept Development

Based on our site analysis and desired landscape elements, the design team creates a Conceptual Master Plan for your project. We typically draw the plan in CAD and present to you a scaled drawing of the proposed landscape. The plan shows hardscapes, water-harvesting features, planting zones and anything else that was part of the scope. If you are leaning towards installation with our company, the designer and project manager will roughly layout the design on site with paint and flags to verify what may have to be adjusted in the final design plan. standard permaculture design process

6.    Planting Zone Map and Plant List

standard permaculture design process If agreed to in the design proposal, we will create a color-coded map representing various planting zones in the project area. A plant list will accompany this map and will be labeled accordingly. This is not a specific planting plan with each plant specified. We are capable of creating one should it be desired.

7.    Final design

The final design drawing is sent electronically and as a hard copy for your review. This may also include refined planting, lighting and irrigation plans for use in cost estimation and installation. final standard permaculture design

8.    Build your project and heal the earth!

If you plan to move from design to installation, we will meet with you onsite to review layout and placement of landscape elements. At this point material choices should be finalized and an installation estimate provided.

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