Design tools

I thought it would be useful to revisit a number of Permaculture design tools before thinking about any particular project. I can then reflect on these tools and consider which I find to be the most useful and the best fit for my way of working. This can inform my work in the future and help me with time-management. On my PDC I learnt a lot of design tools and put some of them to use when working my own designs. My sketchbook has an interesting page listing lots of design tools, see below.

designtools sketchbook

simple design processThe action learning cycle

Permaculture design process at its most simple. I find it a useful reminder of the stages. Observe, Think, Design, Do. This then cycles on and on, continuously informing your practice.

This is similar to CEAP which I like because it reminds of the importance of applying Permaculture principles.

Collect site information
Evaluate the information
Apply Permaculture principles
Plan a schedule of implementation, maintenance, evaluation and tweaking

OBREDIMET    obredimet


An alternative is SADIMET Survey, Assess, Design, Implement, Maintain, Evaluate,Tweak

You could also use PASTE: Plants, Animals, Structures, Tools, Events, when carrying out the ‘survey’ or ‘observe’ stages to break this down further and give reminders of specifics to look for.

SWOC Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Constraints (or Challenges) could be useful to give a fast overview of a site, issue or idea. I think this one is good at focussing the mind!

I find these design tools very useful and even more so when you break them down into real tasks as the following photo shows. design process stage


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