Sara Haney & Chrissy Begus: Piecing Together the Permaculture Puzzle
Sara Haney and Chrissy Begus are piecing together the puzzle of sustainability through their education company Puzzle Permaculture, which currently offers permaculture workshops in schools, corporate lunch-n-learns, some adult teaching programs. They also co-hosted a very successful permaculture garden tour in 2012. Sara and Chrissy’s upbeat and engaging energy, unique scale models and undeniable experience as public speakers and educators is in high demand, and even since the shooting of this video, has grown steadily.
Sara’s yard is also a shining example of urban permaculture design. Starting from scratch, her and her husband began cutting up the concrete slab that was formerly their backyard to expose the soil, and from there have birthed an incredible example of the powers of permaculture design. At their home they have 3 bee hives, a young food forest and veggie garden which together contain an amazing variety of plants, a greenhouse (where they grew sub tropical plants such as okra and have an outdoor shower!), passive rainwater collection system, swales, wicking beds, cold frames, and more. When we came by to visit the yard for our first time in early April of 2012, we were amazed to see that Sara was already harvesting spinach and other greens from some of her cold frame gardens! Beyond the beauty and functionality of the garden project, Sara has managed to foster a great relationship and open dialogue with the neighbours, some of whom even popped by to say hello while we were filming. When she’s not teaching or gardening, Sara also runs Apple Tree Sustainables – featuring a blog that documents her and her husbands’ yard transformation, and also natural body products which she makes and sells herself.
These two inspiring women show how permaculture design can foster hope for a better future, offer practical solutions and action steps, as well as help people take their skills or professional background and turn it into a small side business or full time entrepreneurial venture.
Verge’s Grad Interview Series tells the stories of 10 past students of our Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course, documenting what they’ve done with the knowledge, skills and inspiration they acquired from the course. Two film makers set out to find these graduates and catch them in action, capturing their successes, struggles, and transformations as they embark on new endeavours – starting gardens, homesteads, community projects, businesses, building sustainable homes and structures, hosting conferences and much more. Click here to view all videos in this series.