Introduction to Organic Gardening and Permaculture with Gauri Devi

Dates: June 2nd-8th, 2014

Gain in-depth knowledge and learn beneficial techniques to use in your garden for the optimal health of your land and surrounding environment. This course is ideally informative and beneficial for all gardeners, be they in rural, urban, or suburban environments. Throughout this 7-day intensive we will cover Permaculture design methods and principles, proper composting, water-holding on your land, contour-building and using A-Frames for contour beds and swales, alternative mulching techniques, plant guilds, soil structure and improvements, and much more!

During the course students will also have an opportunity to participate in the Ashram Schedule by attending two meditation and satsangs, as well as a 2-hour morning yoga class each day. Course participants will meet daily after brunch for the theory portion of the day’s lesson, have a short break, and meet again in the garden for more practical, “hands-on” lessons.


Gauri Devi grew up gardening and has been a professional gardener and landscape designer since the age of 21. Having interned on several organic farms throughout the United States, Gauri has been gardening for the Sivananda Organization since becoming staff in 2010, first as head gardener at the Bahamas Ashram, and now at the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Camp (Sivananda Headquarters) in Quebec. Gauri has a 72-hour permaculture design certificate, and has given numerous lectures for master gardeners. This will be her first week-long organic gardening and permaculture course.



Specific Topics to be Covered:

  • Tour of the Ashram Grounds and Gardens
  • Brief history of Permaculture and its vast importance
  • Permaculture Design Methods, principles, and elements
  • Alternative bed shapes and techniques to grow more on less land
  • Holding Water on Your Land- Learn seven techniques to holding water on your land.
  • Understand the importance of preventing water run-off and the environmental consequences uncontrolled water run-off.
  • Working on Contour-Building and using an A-Frame: Learn the importance of finding the contour lines on your land, as well as how to build and use an A-frame to create beds and swales on contour.
  • Composting and Building Organic Matter: Learn the ratios and “how-to” behind hot and cold composting, and how to build organic matter through various mulching techniques.
  • Soil and Plants: Understand the basics of soil composition and its relationship with plants. Learn how to do an at-home soil test. Realize how to make nitrogen available to plants to avoid using synthetic fertilizers.
  • Double Digging, Hugelkulture and Cover Crops: Practice and understand the benefits of building garden beds with these techniques and practice. Understand the benefits and uses of cover crops.
  • Overview of course material and concluding questions


Course fees $300 + 6 nights accommodation