Permaculture Island is a family run homestead situated on a two acre property that fronts Niton Undercliff, overlooking Reeth Bay at the southern tip of the Isle of Wight. The landscape is diverse unmanaged wild forest and scrub, with abundant wildlife thriving in this special micro climate. The homestead is under continuous development and with ever changing and evolving ground research in practice; work is consistently in progress to develop more efficient and productive systems.


“The only ethical decision

is to take responsibility for

our existence and that of our children”

Bill Mollison.

We practise subsistence gardening as an alternative to the money consumer lifestyle, We provide a public compost recycling service of 10m3 per day and sell surplus fresh fruit and preserves.

Thick mulches cover our soils, no cultivation, mostly perennial crops like trees, shrubs, climbers and other perennial plants are mixed in such a way as to mimic the structure of a natural forest which is the most stable and sustainable type of ecosystem in this climate. We currently provide public guided tours of our homestead and offer practical further education of permaculture and simple living.

We don’t just teach it… WE LIVE IT!


Oil has fuelled much of the massive population  growth of the last 150 years, It is the single largest energy source of the world economy, the lifeblood of the industrial society. According to a growing number of experts, within the next handful of years the world will reach the ultimate peak in global production. After this point, production will begin its slow but terminal decline. Peak oil, as this event has become widely known, represents an historical turning point, from an era of growth, to an era of contraction. Peak gas won’t be far behind.

Most analysts who have carefully studied the problem agree that Peak oil cannot be solved with ‘supply side’ solutions. Alternative energy sources simply can’t fill the gap that oil and gas will leave behind. Massive social changes look like a given. We have to learn to make do with less energy.

With less available fossil fuel, we’ll be forced to begin moving back towards living within the annual energy budget provided by the sun. While renewable’s may help, ultimately this means discovering lifestyles less based around consumerism, and better integrated with natural processes and cycles. Given that the health of the planet is in a far worse state than when humankind embarked on the fossil fuel adventure, this is indeed a highly challenging prospect.

The concept of Energy Descent Action Plan (EDAP) isn’t widely known or discussed one. Even the issue  which forms the EDAP’s main inspiration – Peak Oil – may not be widely appreciated. An Energy Descent Action Plan is inspired by the looming Peak Oil, as well as the permaculture design system, and the inevitability of economic relocalisation.  At Permaculture Island we have created a family EDAP, which is constantly evolving and progressing towards defined goals.


Permaculture is a ” design system for sustainable human habitats that supply human needs in an environmentally enhancing way”. Permaculture is all about functional design – ways to maximise productivity and abundance, while minimising effort, by working with nature, rather than against it.








We have observed that chickens and humans can thrive by offering  greater independence, to move from passive consumer to forager revolutionises not just individuals but the whole tribe.



Our focus is to directly fulfil daily requirements where possible rather than indirectly with money, we define requirements from a simple list of essentials which have great value.

  • Water and food/medicine
  • Shelter and clothing
  • Energy and Air
  • functional design
  • Social and trading

It is the conscious application of these values that we live by and the recognition that all the best things in life are free.


We favour low-tech solutions for resilience and local dependency.

  • Compost toilets
  • Grey water irrigation
  • Biogas
  • Mulching
  • functional infrastructure


Solar and wind energy satisfies our electrical demands and powers our transport requirements of Van and bikes.




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Contact details:

Lucy Roberts