The word Permaculture was coined in 1978 by Bill Mollison, an Australian ecologist, and one of his students, David Holmgren. It is a contraction of “permanent agriculture”, or “permanent culture”.

According to Bill Mollison, the originator of the Permaculture design system, “Permaculture principles focus on thoughtful designs for small-scale intensive systems, which are labor efficient and which use biological resources instead of fossil fuels. Designs stress ecological connections and closed energy and material loops. The core of Permaculture is design and the working relationships and connections between all things. Each component in a system performs multiple functions, and each function is supported by many elements. Key to efficient design is observation and replication of natural ecosystems, where designers maximize diversity with polycultures, stress efficient energy planning for houses and settlement, using and accelerating natural plant succession, and increasing the highly productive edge-zones within the system.”