Factors to Consider
Design is the most important aspect of permaculture. Every element in a design must have multiple functions before it is accepted. Every design needs to consider the sectors, (outside influences) sun, wind, water, fire, frost, soils.
Sectors are mapped on top of a base drawing - site plan, topographical. This is something very valuable you can do for yourself. Draw a plan and map everything on your land. Start with a site plan or plot from your governing agency that files land applications. Or maybe you have a builder's plan already showing your land and house on it. For large properties have an aerial photograph taken or use Google Earth satellite imagining, it saves a lot of work.
As a home site therapist, Don will develop soul in your project, thus helping it become functional and peaceful. It is the science of connections and relationships that bonds you with your home and land. Don likes to call the process “Holistic Design.”
From that mapped drawing have it copied a few times to have paper to play with. Next map your sectors;
Fire Danger - uphill funnels, land/building factors
Winds - winter/summer/spring/fall directions
Water - flood/drought/supply/catchments
Views - mountains, trees, ocean, not next door
Wildlife - access/corridors/damage
Traffic/Noise - screenings/relocating
Access - to land/buildings/materials/co-ops
Other important aspects particular to your land.
Now is the time to discuss what is working and what is not. This becomes your line of thought in how to take the next step… how things fit together.
At this point you may wish to seek the services of a certified permaculturist. One point of fact - no matter where you live, any permaculturist can help you because the principles of permaculture are the same throughout the world. What changes is suitability. For instance a straw bale house would not be appropriate in Hawaii.
Thus it is time to create the zones and guilds. Zones help you make life easier and more efficient with time and resources. An example would be to consider how many times a day you visit the vegetable garden as compared to the orchard? So most likely the garden would be nearer the house than the orchard. Guilds help put together things that help each other. An example of a guild is what in gardening is called companion planting.