ADVANCED PERMACULTURE IMMERSION OPPORTUNITY
Deep Dirt Institute is excited to offer 3 apprenticeships on a rolling basis. The Permaculture Apprenticeship runs in 6-month cycles. Cohorts start around the spring and fall equinoxes, and stay for either 6 or 12 months. We are located in beautiful Patagonia, AZ, an area that’s referred to as a
global biodiversity hotspot.
The work that is done here in these arid landscapes has applications for one-third of the planet’s land surface. This is a unique opportunity to learn how to restore arid landscapes, maximize the effects of rainfall, and reverse the effects of climate change.
The fee for the Permaculture Immersion Apprenticeship is $1,000 per month. Financial assistance may be available.
You will receive a permaculture immersion experience, hands-on learning, close mentorship from permaculture expert Kate Tirion, free attendance at our workshops, and the ability to harvest vegetables and fruits from our site for personal use.
permaculture principles & ethics
reading the landscape
*personal project design
habitat for wildlife
adobe & natural building
waste system management
Managing and maintaining irrigation systems
Greenhouse work and food systems, including compost making and plant propagation
Building rainwater detention structures
Developing wildlife habitat
Hedge row development
Rodent management and trapping
Managing and maintaining composting toilet
Interacting with guests and visitors
Managing outdoor shower during cold months
Administrative work and meeting attendance
As you develop skills, you can also pitch in with the teaching of workshops that are held on the farm. Our goal is for you to develop an overall understanding of permaculture systems and how to think through design and construction, from the ground up. The foundational piece of this resident apprenticenship—as with any permaculture immersion program—is how you read the landscape and how you approach site development.
*By the end of your apprenticeship, we want you to identify
a project, design it, and build it out.
For a qualified, interested apprentice who might want to stay longer, on a case-by-case basis, an apprentice may have the opportunity to transition into a
mentor or farm manager/teacher role.
Must be 18 years or older
Expected either a 6 or 12 month commitment
Expected 40 hours/week, which includes chores
Already earned a Permaculture Design Certificate
Able to perform physically demanding farm work
Must have own transportation. The DDI campus is within biking distance of Patagonia (about 2.5 miles).
Must enjoy rustic living or provide own alternative housing
(See “Amenities” below)
30-day trial period to make sure it’s a good fit for both parties
Fingerprint clearance (because of working with youth groups)
Must have your own health insurance
Required reading: Introduction to Permaculture, by Bill Mollison
QUALITIES WE LOOK FOR:
Eager to learn
Able to take direction
Motivated to take on physical work
We encourage apprentices to live on-site at no charge. You do have the option of living off-site but will need to provide your own transportation to the farm each day. We give preference to those who choose to live on-site.
Outdoor camp kitchen (rustic) with propane cooking and propane refrigerator
No running water; Excellent drinking water from deep groundwater well
Tent camping or if available, vintage fifth wheel that is a camping system
Sheltered shower with hot water
Indoor composting toilet
Minimal solar power during daylight hours that can recharge small powered devices (e.g. phone, headlamp, small solar lights) but cannot recharge larger devices such as laptops
NO WiFi on site; You can get cellular data through Verizon or AT&T
- You can walk or ride your bike to the town of Patagonia, about 2.5 miles from the farm
This is not fully camping, but it’s not far off…. You may be the only full-time resident(s) on site.
LANDSCAPE & CLIMATE
Arid land - average 18.25 inches of rain each year
Wildlife abounds, including snakes!
Extreme cold of 3 degrees Fahrenheit, high of 108
Hot, dry summer (similar to Africa)
Cooler, wet monsoon period in July - early September (looks like Great Britain) with dramatic lightning, thunderstorms, and downpours
HOW TO APPLY
There is no application fee to apply and we have an open deadline for applications.
After we receive and review your application, we may contact you to set up a phone interview.
The Madrean Pine-Oak Woodlands
The rugged Madrean mountain chains of Mexico and the Sky Island Heights of the southwestern United States are dominated by low, dry forests of pine and oak.
One fourth of Mexico’s native species occur in these ancient woodlands; many are found nowhere else. Pine forest in the Michoacan are the famous wintering place of monarch butterflies from the United States.
Of greatest importance is the role of woodlands as a corridor, permitting north-south expansion of species between the United States, the Mexican Plateau, and the Cordilleras of Central America.
Creating these and similar habitat corridors are one way of lessening the impact of climate change on biodiversity.
− E.O. Wilson