Holmgren’s 12 Design Principles
These restatements of the principles of permaculture appear in Holmgren’s Permaculture: Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability; also see permacultureprinciples.com;
- Observe and interact - By taking time to engage with nature we can design solutions that suit our particular situation.
- Catch and store energy - By developing systems that collect resources at peak abundance, we can use them in times of need.
- Obtain a yield - Ensure that you are getting truly useful rewards as part of the work that you are doing.
- Apply self-regulation and accept feedback - We need to discourage inappropriate activity to ensure that systems can continue to function well.
- Use and value renewable resources and services - Make the best use of nature’s abundance to reduce our consumptive behaviour and dependence on non-renewable resources.
- Produce no waste - By valuing and making use of all the resources that are available to us, nothing goes to waste.
- Design from patterns to details - By stepping back, we can observe patterns in nature and society. These can form the backbone of our designs, with the details filled in as we go.
- Integrate rather than segregate - By putting the right things in the right place, relationships develop between those things and they work together to support each other.
- Use small and slow solutions - Small and slow systems are easier to maintain than big ones, making better use of local resources and producing more sustainable outcomes.
- Use and value diversity - Diversity reduces vulnerability to a variety of threats and takes advantage of the unique nature of the environment in which it resides.
- Use edges and value the marginal - The interface between things is where the most interesting events take place. These are often the most valuable, diverse and productive elements in the system.
- Creatively use and respond to change - We can have a positive impact on inevitable change by carefully observing, and then intervening at the right time.