My journey was good but a little cold and wet through the Highlands. When I arrived I stopped for a bit and sat on the bank of a small river and very soon a Heron flew in to hunt, followed by chaffinches then a Grey Wagtail House Martins and some birds a bit like bullfinches, they were all catching Mayflies which were just emerging. Some mallards were there as well. Suddenly a panic alarm call by a chaffinch which flew up from a rock in the river and dived into a tree and there flying upstream fast and low came a Sparrowhawk! Also saw Blackbird crows and pigeons. At night there are curlews calling. Funny thing was while I was sitting a group of 3 walkers came past and all the birds except the ducks disappeared and only came out when they had gone. Without my time with you I would have missed all this, thank you so much for reconnecting me with the natural world.
Testimonies from 2-month PDC students
It doesn’t become any more permaculture than this! Ludwig Appeltans has a unique way of combining in depth nature connection and awareness with permaculture design. These two months at Earth-Way Farm have been quite mind-changing and a wonderful way of thinking outside of the normal “box”. Ludwig has been a wonderful teacher, mentor and, glad to say, friend. Thank you.
If you want to experience permaculture and nature connection on a long term basis, so you can really make it your own, this is the place to be.
When I think back to what I knew before and compare it to now, the change is quite astounding. If you’d asked me 3 months ago to create a vegetable routine I would have laughed, but I’ve just created my first reasonably comprehensive one that I feel would have some good success in reality.
This course is a must for anyone who wishes to feel empowered to actually live in a way that is more authentic. Food is a big part of this, as is nature connection, after doing this course, one is able to design and produce food systems, beautiful connections with community, self and others, while keeping ‘nature’ mother earth as the highest priority. Of course it is an ongoing learning journey and for me it feels, the journey has just begun.
Rather than emerging myself into books and papers, I emerged myself into nature. You can learn so much through simply observing and being aware. I can recommend it to anybody that loves combining practical permaculture with background knowledge. Be prepared to be a different person afterwards.
The two months gave me space to absorb all the information through practise on the farm, reading in the library and sitting room and asking Ludwig and my fellow students loads of questions. I think it is great if you want to have a good experience of life in beautiful Scotland. Learn shitloads about permaculture and everything else. Get a sense of the challenges we have on this earth and have fun.
From the two week Permaculture Design Courses
“A great course with inspiring tutors. You cannot complete this course and not go away and change the way you live, at least in some small way. Inspiring and thought provoking.” ‐ J.K.
“Everyone on the earth should do this course. Everything it teaches is so important in ensuring we build a respectful and resilient world. I can’t wait to learn more and spread the word!”
“Ludwig is able to communicate his love for our planet. He is an exceptionally inspiring auld chap.” ‐ Ben, Kirriemuir
Beyond my expectations. As well as the factual knowledge, my soul feels like it’s been touched deeply. Jonny Harris
I really feel a deeper connection to myself and nature as well as a much better understanding of permaculture and the mindset of permaculture. Jayson Byles
Inspiring, enriching, informative and fun. It gave me the tools and inspiration to practise permaculture in daily life. D.P. Forres
The course is wholesome and well balanced. All topics are inspiring and lead not only to healing of mother nature but also to healing of all people involved. Thank you much for your love and dedication. Love and Light Christine
It took permaculture into fullness, affecting me on emotional level deeply. Amy
Ludwig: Great inspiration and wealth of teachings.
It’s way more than a Design course. It’s an opportunity to fly with Buzzards view to see yourself part of the whole to be nourished, challenged and connected on many levels. Amy
I thoroughly enjoyed such a holistic course, the passion and knowledge is astounding and the close-knit community we created in such a short time makes this course stand out, and was an experience I will never forget. Stephanie Ayres
“I’ve been volunteering at Penninghame permaculture project since mid Marts (end of May now), and I’m really enjoying my time here, and learning a lot!
I came with an expectation of learning what Permaculture is all about, and after a couple of months here, I don’t think I could have found a better place. (Thanks Ludwig!)
At the same time I’ve learnt about macrobiotic food and how important a healthy diet is, and I’ve meet some amazing and really inspiring people.
I will recommend all people with an interest in food, health and nature-connection to be a part of this place. You’ll get an idea of a healthy way of growing your food, healthy for you, the earth and the environment, and an idea of how to make that food into the perfect diet. And at the same time you won’t be able to not get a deeper connection with nature.” ‐ Jeannie Olsen, Denmark
“I have been at Penninghame estate since February 2012 on the Permaculture project run by Mr. Ludwig Appeltans, it has been a life-changing experience, now this phrase is much over-used, but for me there is no other way of describing it. It has completely changed how I look at Gardening, in a way that cares for the earth, the very soil we so often neglect and disregard. My time here has fundamentally changed how I view our role on the planet, and enlightened me to the lessons in which nature itself can teach us. I feel the knowledge I gain here will benefit the rest of my life and I am privileged to have been giving the opportunity to learn and grow spiritually. I am sure many others before and after I will have a similar experience.” ‐ G.W.S.Clark, Aberdeen
From a 3 Day Course
“Ludwig led a beautiful group with sensitivity and depth.”
“Consistent, methodical and passionate about his subject.”
“I really enjoyed the flow and rhythm between doing / listening / play.”
“Ludwig is very touching – soft, with a lot of knowledge yet very humble.”
“Very knowledgeable and passionate, approachable and non-judgemental.”
“A very shared learning experience, valuing participants’ prior knowledge, very interactive with games and a balance between indoor and outdoor learning. Had the opportunity to apply learning with practical tasks & creating our own permaculture design – with support from the group. Very enjoyable!” ‐ Deirdre, Forres
“Feel very inspired by our weekend together – have been touched and had insights / wee transformations in unexpected areas… thank you each for your part in it.” ‐ Bettina, Findhorn
“I really appreciated the clarity, competence and commitment.” ‐ T. Sibilia, Forres
“The Earth Ways Permaculture course was accessible enough for me to understand as a relative beginner and deep enough to engage my inspiration, curiosity and creativity.”
“Every so often in life you stumble across a little gem – and this is one! Since I discovered his site, Ludwig has guided me in my efforts to plant my newly acquired garden with native species of plants designed to flourish in their particular environment. His knowledge of plants is extensive, detailed and willingly shared and nothing is too much trouble for him. His passion and concern for the environment is evident in everything he does, from his work in his own piece of woodland – which you can read about on his website – to the care he takes in packaging his plants. All the plants I have bought from Ludwig have been vigorous and healthy and I can recommend him thoroughly. Like me, you will not be disappointed!” ‐ Christine W, Norfolk
“Earlier this year I attended a Permaculture Introduction on the Island of Bute just off the west coast of Scotland. I was blown away by what I had learned and am really looking forward to learning more. This is obviously what we need to be doing in order to restore our planet, Ludwig is an amazing person with so much knowledge, this man knows his stuff. Some people strive to look the best to impress others, I strive to show others we can all be better. It’s time for change.” ‐ Nick
“Very efficient and professional report. Was clearly laid out with achievable objectives and will definitely be using the services of Earth Ways again.” ‐ S. Angus, Forres
“This is my second year of dealing with Ludwig. It will certainly not be my last year. I like the fact that what I acquire gets reinvested in environmental projects. He is a very ethical plantsman and a pleasure to deal with. Every plant I get is well packaged in natural materials. It is also a wise idea to plant native plants in your garden and have trees in your garden, there is nothing like shade and woodland setting. It’s great for birds, insects and the environment as their habitats are being lost. Although I am guilty of planting lots of non-native species, I am trying to redress the balance.” ‐ Mohammed A, Birmingham
“I loved your innovative packaging, the plants were quite happy wrapped in the moss inside the bottle. I gave them some TLC and visitors to the community orchard were able to pot them on & take them home. Thanks for your help. I’ll recommend you to colleagues if they need native plants.” ‐ Jo, Manchester
“Many thanks for marigolds which arrived safe. I was not here when they arrived and my wife was mesmerised at the package which arrived, though she did remove the top and added some water. When I got home next day a marigold head had already popped out of the neck – see photo. With more people like yourself there would be no global warming!” ‐ Brian
“Ludwig was a very pleasant and courteous guest. After making a thorough assessment and lots of observations, he gave me very well thought out and useful written advice, with really good links to the internet for extra detail. I feel very much more confident about going ahead with my project now than I did before his visit, especially knowing that I can call on his wide experience and knowledge, as it is needed. I have no hesitation in recommending anyone who needs advice on permaculture, forest gardening or general woodland management from enlisting Ludwig to give them very comprehensive assistance.” ‐ Susan Maxwell, Kintyre