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Permaculture Design Certification Course
Apr 17 @ 8:00 am – May 1 @ 8:00 pm

• Class Description:
Join renowned permaculture instructors Scott Gallant, Chris Shanks, Rachel Jackson, Mitch Haddad, and Laura Killingbeck for this annual life-changing 2-week experience. The course covers the core Permaculture Design curriculum and emphasizes creating diverse multi-functional human landscapes based on ecological patterns. Utilizing Rancho Mastatal as a living classroom, the class will mix lectures and hands-on work, exploring design solutions for both temperate and tropical regions.  Putting Permaculture into practice, the course concludes with students working in teams to create their own permaculture site design. This course is applicable to anyone with an interest in designing resilient and regenerative futures as well as professionals in the fields of architecture, planning, ecology, education, farming and community development. The whole-systems design thinking outlined in the course will give participants the tools to re-design and improve their surroundings; from gardens, farms and homes, to livelihoods, relationships and communities.

Please note that permaculture is a principle and ethic based design science.  This course does not include metaphysical, spiritual, nor religious topics and practices.  For a general overview of what a PDC includes and what you can expect, please listen to this podcast from Permaculture Voices.

To learn about who this course is designed for, learning outcomes, what to bring, and much more, please read our 2016 PDC Course Information Book.

Our PDC Flyer in English and Spanish for anyone able to share the word!

Topics covered include:

tPrinciples and ethics of Permaculture Design
tDesign methodologies: observation, overlay mapping, etc
tThe basics of mapping and surveying
tSite analysis and assessment, from the tropics to temperate regions
tClient interviews and goal setting
tLandscape master planning and microclimate design
tReading the landscape and pattern recognition
tDesign for climate change
tRegenerative land management and stewardship
tWater catchment, storage, filtration, and distribution
tBiologically based treatment of greywater and blackwater
tNatural building techniques including timber framing, bamboo and cob
tIntegrated animal husbandry
tAquaculture and aquaponics
tNursery techniques, plant propagation and grafting
tAgro-forestry and organic horticulture
tCultivation and use of medicinal plants
tSoil rehabilitation and fertility strategies
tOrchard design and maintenance
tAlternative cooking technologies: methane bio-digesters, rocket and bio-char stoves, cob and solar ovens
tRenewable energies and biofuels
tLocal and regenerative economics
tUrban and suburban permaculture strategies
tVillage design and community building strategies

• Teacher Bios:
Scott Gallant
Scott Gallant is an agroforester and food system designer from small town Ohio. He graduated from Wabash College in 2008 with a degree in Economics. As the farm manager at Rancho Mastatal he works with an amazing team to cultivate 15 acres of a emerging tropical agroforest. He is the lead permaculture design instructor on site and one of the principle founders of the Rancho Mastatal Design/Build Collective.  Passionate about regenerative agriculture, holistic thinking, ethnobotany, community development, and re-skilling, he still makes time to hike and bike, read exhaustively, and work on his basketball jump shot and frisbee throw.  He and his partner Laura have traveled and volunteered extensively in Latin America, leading to a love of the culture, food, and language, which they speak.  Scott is a certified Wilderness First Responder, writes for the Permaculture Research Institute and has been featured on the Permaculture Voices podcast.

Chirstopher Shanks
A multi-talented teacher, organizer, permaculture enthusiast, and design visionary, Chris has worked with some of the finest Permaculture and ecological designers in the Western hemisphere. Fascinated with living systems, Chris has invested himself heavily into the study of whole systems design, ethno-botany, horticulture, mycology, and ecology. His interests have led him to study agro-ecosystems and cultural anthropology in Spain, the Bahamas, Costa Rica, the USVI, Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama, Hawai’i, as well as the temperate and sub-tropical regions of both coasts of the United States. Chris combines leading the ground team at Project Bona Fide, a non-profit research and demonstration farm in Nicaragua, with his own work in the professional design world. He works in master planning and site design with Whole Systems Design LLC and serves as their chief horticulturalist and Project Manager. Chris also founded and runs his own company, Living Systems Solutions, based in Nicaragua. When not working in the non-profit or design world he can be found masquerading as a builder, a mason, a decent plumber, a poor electrician, a sailor, a fanatic for bamboo, a lover of palms, a permaculturalist with a rock/tree climbing habit, and as an avid motorcyclist.

Rachel Jackson
Rachel holds a Masters Degree in Sustainable Landscape Planning and Design from the Conway School in Conway, Massachusetts. She has been practicing permaculture in the tropics since 2009, working in both the rainforests of Costa Rica and the dry forests of Nicaragua. She is passionate about creating harmonious, healthy relationships between humans and the landscape. From urban renewal projects in New England to food forests in Latin America, Rachel has used her skills to create integrated, whole-system designs in difficult locations. She has also worked as a garden-based youth educator, art handler, photographer and carpenter and harbors a life-goal of trying as many varieties of tropical fruits as possible.

Mitch Haddad
A dedicated community organizer and permaculture aficionado-in-training. He holds joint degrees in Latin American Studies, International Studies and Spanish from Providence College. Since joining the Project Bona Fide team in 2010, Mitch has grown into a key player within the organization. He emphasizes a community-based approach to project management and is a wealth of knowledge about the ins and outs of daily life at the farm. In addition to being an amateur builder and carpenter, he is passionate about natural building, food security and appropriate technology. When he’s not running around the farm and interacting with the local community, he gorges himself on guavas and continues to refine his jamming, fermentation, and chocolate-making skills.

Laura Killingbeck
Laura is wildly passionate about food, nutrition, and whole systems health. She has a BA in Sociology and Philosophy from the University of Rhode Island and is a current Wilderness First Responder. She worked previously as a superhero mascot, a sawyer, and a sustainability consultant. Laura spent several years traveling through Latin America by thumb, boat, bike, and bus before landing at the Ranch with her partner Scott in 2009. She spends her days concocting live culture ferments, curing vanilla, planting rhizome guilds, and living in community.

• Language class is taught in:
The course will be taught in English and simultaneously translated into Spanish.  Este curso será traducido simultáneamente al español . Se requiere un mínimo de dos hispano hablantes para ofrecer servicios de traducción.

• Cost

Central Americans, US$850; residents and ex-pats, US$1350; foreigners (non-Central American) US$1,500. These prices include 15 nights lodging (starting on April 16), all meals (except on Sunday nights when we support a local restaurant), course instruction and full access to Rancho Mastatal and its private wildlife refuge.

• Accommodations:
For more information about food and lodging please see our website at accommodations.

• Course Payment:
Please follow the link for payment options.

• Directions:
Rancho Mastatal Sustainability Education Center
Mastatal, Puriscal


Urbanización, biodiversidad y calidad de vida: retos y oportunidades @ Universidad para la Cooperación Internacional
May 26 @ 12:00 am – 3:00 am

¿Está el crecimiento urbano realmente ligado a la pérdida de biodiversidad?

En Costa Rica, a pesar de que contemos con el 4% de la biodiversidad mundial, parece que asumimos que las zonas urbanas excluyen a la biodiversidad, se suele pensar que ésta es solamente parte de parques nacionales y reservas biológicas.

Pero esto no tiene porqué ser así, las ciudades pueden ser un medio perfecto para propiciar una adecuada convivencia entre biodiversidad y vida humana. Varias iniciativas a nivel nacional e internacional lo demuestran.

Así el marco del Día Mundial de la Biodiversidad, el Centro Para la Sostenibilidad Urbana (CPSU) y la Universidad Para la Cooperación Internacional (UCI) le invitan a participar en este conversatorio.

La actividad dará inicio a las 6:00 pm con un café de bienvenida y a las 6:20 empezará propiamente el conversatorio. Se tratarán los siguientes temas:

1. Ciudad y Biodiversidad.
2. Estrategia de Restauración Ecológica de la Ciudad.
3. ‘’Curridabat Ciudad Dulce’’ y su desarrollo a nivel municipal
4. ‘’Rutas naturbanas’’, sus retos e implicaciones .

Se terminará con espacio para compartir ideas y opiniones sobre el tema.

¡Los esperamos! 🙂

Favor confirmar su asistencia en el siguiente formulario:

Conversatorio: Voces de mujeres, historias que transforman @ Casa Batsú
May 27 @ 12:30 am – 3:30 am

Conversatorio: Voces de mujeres, historias que transforman

Nos visitan desde México compañeras que ha llevado a cabo un proceso comunitario con mujeres de distintas luchas sociales, que han alzado su voz por medio de producciones audiovisuales creadas por ellas mismas y les han permitido contar historias que nos tranforman.

Les invitamos el jueves 26 de mayo, a las 6:30 p.m a un conversatorio con ellas donde conoceremos el proceso y resultados de este proyecto, podemos compartir, preguntar, intercambiar ideas y crear redes latinoamericanas de resistencia y lucha social. La entrada es gratuita!

Les compartimos un texto donde nos explican un poco más del proyecto y la visión del conversatorio:
En un mundo dominado por imágenes de mujeres que no nos representan, tomar la palabra es un acto revolucionario. Nuestras historias existen, cambian el mundo todos los días. Son historias de mujeres guerreras, pero ¿por qué han permanecido sin ser contadas?
Voces de mujeres, historias q transforman es un laboratorio de apropiación de herramientas narrativas, audiovisuales y digitales, mujeres de diferentes estados del país han hecho visible, con su propia voz, el papel transformador de mujeres luchadoras en sus comunidades.
A lo largo de este proyecto nos hemos encontrado para compartir, para tejer juntas mas historias de nuestras abuelas, de nuestras hermanas, de nuestras compañeras, mujeres guerreras. En el camino hemos hecho comunidad, hemos labrado una tierra compartida.
Hoy ocupamos la voz, tomamos la palabra, la hacemos nuestra y nos contamos a nosotras mismas. Habitamos nuestras historias desde la solidaridad y la lucha, rehacemos nuestras genealogías, combatimos los estereotipos y nos reconocemos en colectiva. Las historias que compartimos nos nacieron juntas, un relato alternativo de mujeres creadoras de cambio social: mujeres que deciden sobre su propio cuerpo, mujeres sanadoras, curadoras, mujeres de maternidad alternativa, mujeres menstruantes, feministas jóvenes, activistas, trabajadoras sexuales, lesbianas, sobrevivientes.

Curso Gratuito para Fotógrafos Callejeros
May 28 @ 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Dirigida a todos los interesados en reforzar sus conocimientos en la fotografía en general y los conceptos básicos de la fotografía de calle.

El Curso no tiene ningún costo, sin embargo el café preparará un desayuno para cada participante por tan solo 1,500 Colones con el fin de utilizar las instalaciones del local.

Esperamos contar con su participación.

Permaculture Design Course, Finca Tierra
May 29 @ 2:00 pm – Jun 12 @ 11:00 am

Permaculture Design Certificate Course

Fundamentals of Ecological Design
May 29 – June 12, 2016
* Check in is on Sunday at 2pm, followed by a brief orientation and dinner. The course starts on Monday at 8am. All course work ends on the second Saturday.  Check out is on Sunday at 11 am, following breakfast

Program Includes:
72 hour Permaculture Design Course & Certificate

Lodging – Farm stay lodging (Private bamboo cabins and shared bamboo bunkhouse)

Three daily meals

Field Trips

Internet access



Permaculture is a conscious integrated design system based on ecology and sustainability principles to create resource efficient and productive human environments and reduce our footprint on the earth.  Permaculture provides a framework for consciously designed landscapes that mimic the patterns and relationships found in nature that provide diversity, stability, and resilience.  These systems yield an abundance of shelter, water, energy, and food for the provision of local needs. Common practices include no-till gardening, rainwater catchment, forest gardening, and agroforestry.

Our course offers the standard 72-hour permaculture curriculum for certification recognized internationally by the permaculture movement with a special emphasis on forest gardening in the tropics.  Although we will be in a tropical setting, many of the techniques will transfer directly to any climate.

Finca Tierra is a 9-acre permaculture site and has become an important center for education and community development. Infrastructural systems contain: natural buildings built with local materials ( bamboo, leaf thatch and onsite timber), terraced & medicinal plant gardens, a nursery, seed bank, developing fruit and nut orchards, food forests, native timber forestry, timber bamboo plantings, water-catchment, renewable energy systems, and composting and biological flush toilets.



tPrinciples and Ethics of Permaculture Design
tSite analysis and design, from the tropics to temperate regions
tLandscape master planning and microclimate design
tReading the landscape and pattern recognition
tDesign for climate change
tRegenerative Land Management and Stewardship
tWater catchment, storage, filtration, and distribution
tBiologically based treatment of greywater and blackwater
tUsing greywater in the landscape
tNatural building techniques and vernacular architecture
tPlant propagation and grafting
tOrganic horticulture
tMedicinal plant propagation, usage and preparations
tBiointensive gardening and seed saving
tSoil rehabilitation and fertility strategies
tOrchard design and maintenance
tRenewable energies
tLocal and Regenerative economics
tUrban and suburban permaculture strategies
tEcovillage design and community building strategies
tNetworking within the permaculture community and beyond
tstrategies to create an alternative nation



Courses are held Monday through Saturday. Breakfast is at 7, lunch at 12 and dinner at 6. We cover 12 chapters, approximately one chapter a day, of the standard permaculture curriculum for certification. Mornings are usually filled with practical applications and afternoons dedicated with course slide lectures. Sunday is free for rest or exploring the area. We promote visiting our paradise beaches, kayaking, surfing, snorkeling and diving, waterfalls, hiking, bird and animal watching, bicycling the area etc.

The beginning of the second week includes a field trip to visit local highlights. First to the jungle, were the indigenous steward will teach us about natural medicine and traditional sustainable living*. There we overnight in hand built wooden cabins on the edge of a river. A campfire, swimming and indigenous wisdom and stories are usual activities. We also stop by a mature food forest and taste an amazing variety of unusual fruits and spices, and get a great view of Panama. To round it out we also tour a 300-acre eco-village using animal integration, with chickens, ducks, geese, pigs, horses and sheep;  natural building and community scale organic agriculture.

*We can’t guarantee the trip to the indigenous land because of weather and other variables (rivers at high water stage, horrendous road conditions) but its never stopped us so far so be prepared for it!


Program Info: 
– Please register early as the course can and does fill quickly – Course price does not include airfare – $400 USD non-refundable deposit required, Course fees are refundable up until one month before the course – Meals will include traditional cuisine and farm foods – Academic credits / partial or full grants are often available to undergraduate and graduate students (inquire with us for more information) – Program is taught in English.

$1,300 Tuition

$1,450 (Late registration fee (10% extra) for bookings made less than two weeks before course start date)

We recommend you bring

tTall Socks (above half calf, like futbol/soccer socks)
tLightweight working pants and shirts
tBathing suit
tFlashlight or headlamp (for off farm uses)
tNotebook and pen
tGardening work gloves
tMedical Supplies
tBeach Towel (you are supplied with towels for showering on farm)
tA device to read PDF files (we have a large digital library)

This is a tropical humid forest and it can rain at any time. Temperatures range from 32° to 24° (C)  90° to 75° (F)

Be prepared for the following conditions hot, humid, rainy and muddy. Bring plenty of socks .

Solar lamps are provided for on farm use.

Umbrellas are essential, rain jackets in tropical weather can become hot and humid and are not recommend for on farm use.

During times of extreme rain things can mold, especially leather, but potentially anything so don’t bring anything that you cant live without.

Optional items to consider

tRain coat (for travel)
tSnorkel mask and fins
tWater bottles
tMusical Instruments
tiPod, Mp3 players, speakers

Or buy from available supplies at Finca Tierra

tRubber boots $14
tBiodegradable sunscreen
tNatural bug repellent


“I could listen to permaculture lecture all day but Ian adds enough practical hands on stuff to keep everyone engaged, great mix of lecture and practical. The course instructor was very knowledgeable and engaging not to mention passionate. Always made time for the students and answered any questions we had. The location of the farm is just far enough from town to get peace and quiet but it’s close to some of the better beaches.
— PDC Student, Mario, Mexico

“This place has changed the way I see the world and the way we choose to live with the land. What I have learned at Finca Tierra I can basically apply anywhere. I’m really excited to be coming back here soon. Ian and Ana are amazing, inspiring, engaging, and really passionate about sharing what they have learned through their experience of rebuilding the land and basically learning to be fully sustainable. You should come here if you want to be blown away! So beautiful.
— PDC Student, Gabriel, Louisiana, USA

“The best food we ate on our year trip. We have had such great memories from the Finca Tierra course and will be back once we get our farm and need a refresh.
— PDC Student, Andy, Australia

“Doing the PDC (Permaculture Design Course) at Finca Tierra was an experience of a lifetime! Ian’s breadth and depth of theoretical and practical knowledge, together with his passion and enthusiasm for permaculture leaves you inspired, and with a strong foundation for knowing how to live in harmony with Mother Earth. The biodiversity of flora and fauna on the farm was incredible! It was also really cool to be able to walk around the food forest and just pick something off of a tree or plant and snack on tropical and exotic fruits and veggies. On top of that, being able to experience applications of permaculture outside of the farm, at SEED (Society for Ecological Education and Development) and Finca Inti, was also really cool.

The warm, rustic hospitality is definitely something to note as well. Ana, Ruth (Ana’s sister), Ian, Linton (the farm manager) and Bruce (Ian and Ana’s dog) made our stay very homely, and we felt at ease as soon as we arrived. The food was something out of this world! Ruth and Ana’s ingenuity in the kitchen was exceptional, and with fresh ingredients from the farm; every meal was amazing! Three times a day we would plunge into a wholesome culinary journey over some really stimulating conversations.

Thank you for everything… you guys are awesome hosts! Pura vida!
— PDC Student, Bemnet, Ethiopia

Community Carbon Trees Beach Day/Night @ Dominical
Jun 4 all-day
Taller de Cremas y Exfoliantes Artesanales @ Terapias Holisticas
Jun 5 @ 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Aprende a realizar cremas y exfoliantes artesanales, formuladas con aceites esenciales, extractos de plantas, semillas y especias.

En el recetario encontrarás cremas faciales, corporales y medicinales, como por ejemplo.
Piel Seca
Piel Grasa
Activante de la circulación
Entre otras.

Elaboraremos exfoliantes suaves y amigables a base de granos y semillas, eliminando el uso de azucar y sal que crean microroturas y maltratan nuestra piel.

Costo del talller 25.000 colones.
100% practico, incluye materiales, manual digital y certificado.

Lourdes de Montes de Oca 300mts este de la Universidad Latina, sobre la carretera a Vargas Araya.

Que debes traer:
Un cubrebocas o panuelo.
Cuaderno si quisieras tomar apuntes, pero el manual esta muy bien explicado.
Una llave maya para guardar el manual.
Merienda para compartir.

Reserva el espacio con 10.000 colones

Banco Nacional Colones 200-01-006-045778-6
Cuenta Cliente 15100620010457781

BCR Colones 001-0648741-6
SINPE 15202001064874164

Nathalie Castro Montero
Céd. 7-0168-0514

Informes al 8860-5073

Creando mi Huerta Casera @ San Antonio de Desamparados
Jun 11 @ 2:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Creando mi huerto urbano

8:00 a 12:30
Como diseñar la huerta según el espacio que tengamos.
Preparación de tierra para la siembra.
Aporte de substratos para enriquecer la tierra y para que sirven.
Preparación de camas
Como hacer un semillero.

12:30 a 1:30
Almuerzo compartido.

1:30 a 4:00
Siembra de tomates, lechugas. cebollino….
Trasplante de plantas.
Poda de plantas
Exposición de lombricompostera

Cuando: 11 de Junio
Donde: San Antonio de Desamparados, de la escuela República de Panamá 200m oeste 25m sur, entrada a la pr del Super Mora
Inversión: 10,000 Colones
Incluye: Materiales, plantas para que inicies tu huerta.
Reservas: 8362 1505

Estrategias para la Agricultura Urbana @ FECOU
Jun 16 @ 8:00 pm – Jun 23 @ 11:00 pm

Como parte del mes del ambiente, brindaremos una serie de talleres para continuar promoviendo la necesidad y crecimiento de la agricultura urbana en nuestras comunidades y hogares.

Los talleres son gratuitos y abiertos.

Objetivos /
Brindar habilidades teóricas y prácticas para la escogencia de materiales, herramientas y territorios necesarios, para el inicio de una huerta urbana.


Fecha: Jueves 16 / 2:00pm
Temas: Semillas
Seguridad – Soberanía – Sabiduría Alimentaria

Fecha: Jueves 23 / 2:00pm
Temas: Permacultura
Diseño según los patrones de la Naturaleza

Fecha: Jueves 30 / 2:00pm
Temas: Huertas Urbanas
Proyectos Comunitarios

Coorganizan /
Granos Paz
Asociación Kokopelli Costa Rica
Centro de Agricultura Orgánica – INA
Red Permanezca

Bibliografía recomendada /

Fukuoka, M. (1978). La revolución de una brizna de paja. INSTITUTO PERMACULTURA MONTSANT.

David H. (1978). La esencia de la permacultura. Traducción Jordi Alemany. Barcelona, España.


Arvol. (2013). Manual de agricultura Urbana. Azoteas verdes de Guadalajara. Casa del Arvol Guadalajara, México.
Boeglin, N. (2015). La piña de Costa Rica ante la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos. Red Internacional de Derechos Humanos.
Carrasco, A. (2014). La ciencia y los OGM. Declaración Latinoamericana por una Ciencia Digna, por la prohibición de los OGM. Revista Biodiversidad 81.
Cháves, A y G. Guzmán. (2011). Agricultura Urbana Familiar. Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganaderia. Sector Agroalimentario. San José, Costa Rica.
Ecodes. (2014). HUERTOS EN EL ASFALTO. Iniciativas de agricultura urbana. Revista esPosible, número 45. Zaragoza, España.
Ecology Action. (2010). Agricultura Biointensiva: Una Revolución más Verde. Perspectivas de Ecology Action. Ridgewood Road Willits, California, Estados Unidos. (s.f.) Agricultura urbana. Recuperado desde:
García, A.. (2011). Impacto Ambiental de la Agroindustria. Febrero, 2011, de INGCO SAS. Recuperado desde:
GFA Consulting Group S.A. (2010).Estudio del Estado de la Producción Sostenible y Propuesta de Mecanismos Permanentes Para el Fomento de la Producción Sostenible, Costa Rica.
Hobbelink, H. (2014). 20 años con transgénicos: ¿Teorías de conspiración o realidad planificada?. Revista Biodiversidad 80.
Servicio de Gestión de publicaciones de la FAO. (2004). Política y desarrollo agrícola. Organización de las Naciones Unidas para la Agricultura y la Alimentación (FAO). Roma.
Leiva, A. (2008) Huertos urbanos, además de brindar beneficios terapéuticos y sociales, mitigan la acumulación del calor en las ciudades. Recuperado desde:
Marshall, A.. (2012). El lado oculto de la agroindustria: Impactos sociales y ambientales. 2012, de Revista Agraria. Recuperado desde:
Moya, F. (2011). Responsabilidad social y ética en el sector agroindustrial colombiano. Escenarios, 9 (1), 90-95.
Zaar, M. (2011) Agricultura urbana: algunas reflexiones sobre su origen e importancia actual. Revista bibliográfica de geografía y ciencias sociales, 16 (944) Recuperado desde:

Permaculture & Yoga Program (PYP)
Jun 19 @ 6:00 am – Jun 25 @ 9:00 pm

Spend a week with us in the jungle and learn to design a bountiful garden that supports all life.
With the era of consumerism, the world faces many challenges from loss of habitat, to environmental degradation and social disconnection. We believe it’s time to cultivate opportunities for positive change and learning. Permaculture – derived from the words “permanent” and “culture” – is a design science based on mimicking efficient patterns and relationships found in nature. Permaculture is yoga for the land, as yoga is permaculture for the body.



Our week-long course includes the following:

7 Days / 6 Nights at Rancho Delicioso
3 Meals per day that showcase healthy fresh cooking from the farm or local providers
Introduction to Permaculture – Daily Workshops
Daily Yoga Class
Aerial Silk Beginner’s Class
Archery Class
Beach Trip To Playa Hermosa (Surfing Lessons Optional)
Montezuma Waterfalls Excursion
Anamaya Yoga Excursion
Pool Party

Introduction to Permaculture Daily Workshops:
The program will include eight permaculture courses, from 90-120 minutes long each, throughout the week, earning you an “Introduction to Permaculture” certificate from Rancho Delicioso. These eight courses will be:

1. Definition, Ethics and Principles:

Participative discussion that includes the Web of Life Activity.

2. Soil Science:

Know your soil types, micro-organisms, textures, Ph, simple tests to do at home.

3. Composting:

Making a “lasagna-style” compost pile and bio-fertilizers.

4. Biointensive Gardening:

Hands on mulching, seeding, transplanting, making beds, moon cycles, pest and disease control, plant propagation, seed saving.

5. Garden Design:

Using patterns and the edge effect – design and hands-on making an herb spiral or mandala garden.

6. Medicinal Plants and Medicine Making:

Native plant walk, tinctures, honey cough syrup and ointments made with local herbs.

7. Food Forests:

Tree planting and maintenance, layers of the forest, guilds, observation exercise in a native forest.

8. Sustainable building:

Discussion about various methods of natural construction techniques, natural cooling, energy, and green building.

Horses and Animals
Animals are an essential part of a sustainable cycle in a farm. They provide companionship, food, work, and even their poop is vital to our work of soil restoration.


Many more photo here: PYP Photo Gallery

Activity Details

Aerial Silk dance class in Rancho Delicioso’s passion fruit dome.

Aerial Silk Basics
Ever wonder what it’s like to dance in the air? Our workshop teaches how to move with the silks using breathing techniques that prevent muscle exhaustion. This is a fun way to activate all muscle groups, while learning a few tricks to show your family and friends back home!
Archery Basics
Perhaps after seeing “The Hunger Games” you have wanted to try shooting a bow and arrow? Now is your chance to let fly a few shots into some hay bales on the farm. It’s surprisingly addictive and cathartic.
Healthy Cooking and Nutrition
The truth is we can all cook like Nigella Lawson without using ingredients from the whole world. Learn to live sustainably by using local seasonal produce to create magic on your plate. From kefir to sauerkraut workshops and making dehydrated chips coated in cashew goodness, our workshops will leave your mouth watering and your body craving more!
Daily Yoga Classes
You don’t have to be a ballerina doing split handstand to be able to practice yoga. Whether you’re a beginner just wanting to stretch, or an advanced level yogi, our daily classes will allow you to connect with your body.

Excursion to do yoga at Anamaya’s new yoga shala

Yoga at Anamaya Resort
The yoga decks at our partner resort – Anamaya – are truly spectacular. With views over Montezuma and out to the ocean, it is a wonderful place to practice at the beginning or end of the day.
Beach and Surfing Trip
No trip to Costa Rica would be complete without a chance to dive in, balance your body, and feel the power of the ocean. Surfboards and surf classes, boogie boards rentals, etc, require an extra fee, but a trip to enjoy the beach is included. Click here to read about some of the area’s best surf spots: Surf Spots Near Rancho Delicioso.
Pool Party
An opportunity to chill with your new-found family beside a cozy bonfire. Enjoy our salt-water swimming pool to cool off from the tropical heat. Stargazing included! Afterwards, those who want more can head down to Montezuma for the famous “Reggae Night” street party every Thursday.

Adriana Pal, our permaculture instructor

Retreat Leader


Adriana Pál

. Adriana is a native Costa Rican, and our area’s leading permaculture expert. She is the founder of

La Escuela de la Jungla

(The School of the Jungle) and has been teaching various courses in the area for several years.

Originally with a background in tourism and hospitality, Adriana became enamored with permaculture and sustainability, and has been educating herself in all things “green.” With a delightful personality, a love of teaching, and a natural ability to connect with people, you will fall in love with her passion for the earth and her drive to help protect it.
Dates offered:

February 7 – 13, 2016 – (Dorm spaces sold out – bring a tent only!)
February 21 – 27, 2016 – (One Dorm Space Left!)

March 6 – 12, 2016 – (Dorm spaces sold out – bring a tent only!)
March 20 – 26, 2016 – (2 Dorm Spaces Left)

April 3 – 9, 2016 – (2 Spaces Left – 1 dorm, 1 tent)
April 17 – 23, 2016 – (3 Spaces left)

May 15-21, 2016 – (Just Added!!)

June 19-25, 2016 – (Just Added!!)

July 3 – 9, 2016 – (Just Added!!)
July 17 – 23, 2016 – (Just Added!!)

August 7 – 13, 2016 – (Just Added!!)
August 21 – 27, 2016 – (Just Added!!)


All programs begin on Sunday and end on a Saturday. This gives a generous window of time if you leave your home country on a Friday night or Saturday, and return to work/school on a Monday.


Video of the farm

Week Schedule

This is a general week schedule, which may shift a bit depending on various things like the availability of teachers. We try to fit all this in here, and more. Sometimes if someone amazing is in town and offering something unique we’ll bring them to the farm and offer it to the guests, such as a unique style of yoga or something that fits with our vibe. Some guests find there’s too much to do and want to relax more… that’s fine too, you’re not obligated to do any of these activities.
Sunday – Orientation

Opening Circle
Introduction to Permaculture

Monday – The Fun Begins

Morning Yoga
Permaculture: Soil Science
Archery Class
Permaculture: Composting
Open Mic Night at Cafe Organico in Montezuma ($4 addl pp for transport)

Tuesday – Anamaya and Waterfall

Healthy Cooking Class
Waterfall Hike and Lunch
Ocean View Yoga at Anamaya Resort
Permaculture: Garden Design

Our Aquaponics Growing House

Wednesday – Beach & Surf Day

Morning Yoga
Permaculture: Biointensive Gardening
Beach Trip – Surfing Optional

Thursday – Anamaya Dinner Night

Morning Yoga
Permaculture: Aquaponics or Greenbuilding
Permaculture: Medicinal Plant Walk
Dinner at Anamaya Resort
Dance and Street Party Night in Montezuma ($4 addl pp for transport)

Friday – Free Day and/or Aerial Silks

Morning Yoga
Permaculture: Food Forests
Aerial Silk Class
Raw Chocolate Making Class

Saturday – Goodbye Day

Morning Yoga
Closing Circle, group hugs, tears, and goodbyes

Click here for a

calendar of classes and events


Lots More Photos
Many more photo here: PYP Photo Gallery

A Typical Day’s Schedule

– Yoga


– Breakfast


– Fitness Class (optional)


– Permaculture Class


– Lunch


– Siesta, Free Time, Swimming Pool, or Various Activities


– Permaculture Class


– Dinner


– Free Time. Movies, bonfire, various extra activities

– Sleepy Time…
For more detail, click here: Detailed Schedule of Activities

Prices & Payment

Dates: February through April 2016

The PYP Program price depends on your accommodations. We currently have three options:

1. Bring Your Own Tent:

– $450

2. Dorms:

– $500 – Check this out here:

Volunteer House/Dorm
3. Joseph’s Treehouse:

$450 base price + $79/nt or $59/nt May-Nov (Please check Joseph’s prices in case of changes.) It has a queen-sized bed, private bathroom and full kitchen. Can be shared by couples who book together. The treehouse is booked directly with Joseph from his AirBnB page:
Dates: June through August 2016

The price is higher for June-August because our new accommodations will be ready with much more space for everyone.

1. Bring Your Own Tent:

– $450

2. Dorms:

– $600

3. Joseph’s Treehouse:

$450 base price + $79/nt or $59/nt May-Nov (Please check Joseph’s prices in case of changes.) It has a queen-sized bed, private bathroom and full kitchen. Can be shared by couples who book together. The treehouse is booked directly with Joseph from his AirBnB page:
Payment and Deposit:

When you’re ready to book, we’ll send you a PayPal money request for 50% of the price of the program, as a non-refundable deposit. The balance is due two weeks before your arrival, and we’ll send you a PayPal money request for that as well. If you prefer to pay the balance in cash when you arrive, that can sometimes be arranged too.

Liability Release Form: Upon arrival you must sign our standard liability release. Please read it before booking: RD Liability Release Form

Additional Notes
Why not add a week?

 If you’d like to add a second week, after your program ends to practice what you have learned, the cost is $200 for the week (7 additional nights). Limited space for 4 people so let us know asap if you want to stay on as a farm volunteer. PYP students who add the extra week will work on the farm with the regular volunteers, but less work is required. We ask for 3 hours per day for this extra week (compared with 6 hours per day for regular volunteers.)

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