In Fall 2014 I became interested in permaculture, a way of designing natural systems in a manner that closes loops, minimizes external outputs, and provides benefits to surrounding life. I enrolled in a 6 week course with Urban Permaculture Institute San Francisco where I learned more about sustainable design, lifestyle design and land-management methods.

The final project was a collaboration with four team members to redesign my backyard space.



  • Create a plan to raise a productive food forest from un-used backyard space.
  • Create pleasant ambient environment to encourage stakeholders to enter and interact with the space.



  • A blueprint and 3-year strategy to transform the space.
  • Complete plant list selection that encouraged symbiosis and positive interaction between elements. 
  • Hands-on and conceptual experience with graywater systems, compost and soil renewal, and homestead design. 


I later traveled to Colombia for a month-long volunteer project on a permaculture homestead, where I supported developing the property using the systems learned in the course.