Sara Haney and Chrissy Begus are piecing together the puzzles of sustainability through their permaculture education company Puzzle Permaculture. These two met in their PDC course with Verge, and later on at a sauerkraut making party decided to combine both of their professional histories as educators to form this new venture. They currently offer permaculture workshops in schools, corporate lunch-n-learns, some adult teaching programs, and also co-hosted a very successful permaculture garden tour in 2012. Once you meet these two and see them teach you will be amazed by their upbeat and engaging energy, abundance of very interesting scale models to describe permaculture principles and techniques, and their evident professionalism and experience as public speakers and educators. Since the shooting of this video, demand for their services has sky rocketed and the young venture they speak of in the video has already grown to be much more.
Sara’s yard is also a shining example of urban permaculture design. Starting off with just a concrete slab, her and her husband began cutting up the concrete to expose the soil and from there they have birthed an incredible example of what permaculture design can do. At their home they have 3 bee hives, a young food forest and veggie garden which together contain an amazing variety of plants, 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! She has done a great job of connecting with her neighbors through their garden project, and some of them even popped by to say hello while we were visiting. Sara also has a project called Apple Tree Sustainables which includes a blog, the documentation of 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.