Permaculture Design For Rented Spaces

Embrace flexible, small space container gardening to make the most of even rented spaces.

Even if you are renting your home, there is still plenty of potential to include permaculture design in your life. It can, of course, be frustrating when we do not have full control over what we can and cannot do where we live. But permaculture can allow us to improve our situations, and live more sustainably, even in the most challenging of circumstances.

  1. Observe and interact – We can always do this, even when the space is not our own.
  2. Catch and store energy – sunlight shines on rented properties too. And using solar energy, for example, is not just about permanent installations such as PV panels. Grow food, use simple, low-tech solutions to improve passive solar gain, etc…
  3. Obtain a yield – food can be grown in mobile containers, even in the smallest of spaces, even if there is no outside space at all.
  4. Apply self-regulation and feedback. Learn from nature and other people. Renters can be inspired and gain knowledge by seeing some of the amazing things other renters have achieved, then implement them wherever they live.
  5. Use and value renewable resources and services. In containers, plants can be grown to provide for many of our needs, and recycling and composting can help us create renewing and regenerative systems.
  6. Produce no waste – refuse, reduce, reuse, repair and recycle.
  7. Design from patterns to details – Larger patterns of sunlight, wind, water etc. are not determined by who owns the land.
  8. Integrate rather than segregate – companion planting can work even in container gardening. But there is also potential to integrate with others – for example, to collaborate with landlords on improving the property. Or to work with other renters on communal areas.
  9. Use small and slow solutions – small space gardening and container growing allow you to really focus your efforts. Renters can add food producing containers and boost yield one small step at a time.
  10. Use and value diversity – different plants, different containers and different growing solutions mean that almost any space can be turned into a biodiverse and productive space with the right approach.
  11. Use edges and value the marginal – there is plenty of potential to use fringe spaces, even in rented spaces, by adding non-permanent vertical gardens, planters and pots.
  12. Creatively use and respond to change – renting is often characterised by impermanence. But container gardening and flexible growing means that you will be ready to move on when the time comes. It might even mean that your garden can come too, leaving the space as you found it.

If you would like a permaculture design for a rented property, please do get in touch.

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