Food Forests: Gardens of Abundance – August

Food Forests: Gardens of Abundance, with Helder Valente and New School Permaculture.

Thursday 8th – Sunday 11th August 2013

A food forest is a garden where we encourage nature to do the majority of the work, yet are able to harvest an abundance of fresh food. Sounds too good to be true? Well it’s not! Join us to learn how to create one in any urban, suburban or rural space, even where space is at a premium.

A food forest is modelled on natural woodland, with crops being grown in multiple layers to produce the maximum yield from a minimum of space. Imagine a diverse and multi-layered mix of tree canopy, berry-laden shrubs, vines, ground cover and planting beds. Plants are chosen which benefit each other and attract beneficial inspects. A healthy, fertile and diverse ecosystem is created which ultimately requires little work from you apart from harvesting. Very little digging, watering, weeding or pest control, and as beautiful as any woodland edge!

This four day course, through a combination of classroom based and practical sessions, will give you all the tools you need to design your own food forest.

– Why make a food forest
– Laying out a food forest
– Ensuring that your food forest has enough nutrients
– Multifunctional pathways
– Building in abundance and resilience
– Low maintenance food growing
– Patterns in nature
– Understanding and maximising edge
– Water management
– Creating a detailed design
– Succession planning
– Implementation plans
– Tree and plant guilds


This course will be taught in English by Helder Valente. Helder is native Portuguese, so Portuguese speakers need not worry about translation for troubling words or ideas.

Helder Valente

Helder studied permaculture with Bill Mollison and now teaches all over the world. You can read about Helder and see examples of his design work here.

Helder facilitated a well received Introduction to Permaculture and Permaculture Design Course here earlier this summer (read one participant’s story here), and we’re looking forward to welcoming him back to Casalinho.


Prices and Payment

The total cost of this Food Forests course is €250. Combine it with our People Care with Permaculture Course 12th – 15th August and pay only €450 in total, saving €50.

The price includes:

  • Food Forest course tuition and certificate of completion.
  • Camping space for your own tent.
  • Use of compost toilet and washing facilities.
  • Vegetarian meals. Additional meals available at a small cost if you wish to extend your stay with us following the course, or are joined by a non-participating guest.

Places are limited. Contact us via email to reserve your place and we will provide you with bank transfer details. Or telephone us on (00351) 235512171 or 934542254 (mobile).

A minimum deposit of 50% is payable at time of booking, with the remaining 50% payable on arrival. When your deposit is received we will acknowledge it by email and confirm your place on the course.

Payments cannot be refunded for cancellations by the student less than 10 days before the course commences.

We reserve the right to cancel the course and refund monies paid in the unlikely event of illness or that insufficient bookings are confirmed. We cannot be held responsible for other costs.


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