A living laboratory for a sustainable human future.

My Experiences With Permaculture


My training with land and culture repair has fallen in the realms of deep ecology, nature connection, mentoring with the wild, wilderness awareness, and racial equity realms. Huge shout out to some of my mentors in these wisdom ways:

  • Sobonfu Somé
  • Warren Brush and the whole Quail Springs Crew
  • Jon Young and the beautiful network stemming from The 8 Shields Institute
  • Lia Grippo and the entire Academy of Forest Kindergarten Teachers
  • Lee Warren, Susan Hough, and Doug Elliott
  • Sharon Tollefson and my beloved Wilderness Youth Project community
  • James Stark and Christopher Kuntzsch, with so much gratitude for The Ecology of Leadership
  • Nadia Chaney with Partners for Youth Empowerment
  • All the teachers I’ve had through the Racial Equity Institute

Thank you. (There’s so many others who I’m forever grateful to as well.)

I discovered permaculture in 2007 when I arrived at Earthaven for the first time.

When I came to Earthaven, I was immediately immersed in permaculture because I was living within a village built from its principles and within a community whose residents were daily practitioners. Permaculture principles carry important messages that encourage us toward right-awareness, right-relationship, and right-consciousness with both the human and more-than-human worlds.

However, something I’ve come to understand more recently is that the permaculture movement has fallen short on the inclusion of black and brown voices, on addressing systemic injustices, and on acknowledging where most of its land-based wisdom originated.

In an effort to explore the permaculture principles through a more equitable lens we are offering a five-part workshop series entitled Decolonizing Permaculture starting Saturday, May 22.

I am super excited about it because it features three fabulous people: Amakiasu Turpin-Howze, Tyson Sampson, and Lee Warren.

Amakiasu Turpin-Howze, Tyson Sampson, and Lee Warren
If you would like to know more about this five-week series, check out the FREE information session on Tuesday, May 11 at 7 pm Eastern time. Click this link to register. Even if you can’t make that time, register anyway and we’ll send you a link to the recording.

Amakiasu Turpin-Howze, Decolonizing Permaculture, land and culture repair, Lee Warren, Tyson Sampson

NikiAnne Feinberg

NikiAnne (she/her) was born and raised on a horse and cattle ranch on the ancestral lands of the Salinan people in the Central Coast of California. She currently lives at Earthaven Ecovillage on unceded lands of the Catawba and Cherokee (Tsalagi) people. Her ancestors come from Eastern and Western Europe — France, Germany, and English Isles as well as Belarus, Lithuania, and Russia, from Ashkenazi Jewish heritage. Throughout the last two decades, NikiAnne has been immersed in community and in service to a wide range of educational endeavors focused on nature connection, personal empowerment, and community resilience. NikiAnne considers herself the grease and glue – that which helps things run smoothly or holds things together. Before co-founding SOIL in 2012, she worked and traveled through much of Asia, the Americas, and Europe, which made her formal education at George Washington University in International Affairs come alive in ways that can only happen through personal experience and relationships. Collectively, these experiences have undeniably shaped her cooperative cultural values and commitment to supporting leaders to think, feel, act and design from a foundation rooted in interrelationship. No matter what she’s teaching, NikiAnne is always on the same mission: to raise awareness of our whole selves – gifts, passions, blind spots, shadows – and help those whole selves find and fill niches in their communities. This is how the web of life is woven, and the fabric of culture repaired. She’s especially eager to support those in transition – between vocations, stages of life, and stories of world and self. Within this context, she is particularly passionate about community grief tending and death care midwifery.

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Upcoming Events

Virtual Earthaven Tour

Saturday, January 14 @ 2 – 4 pm ET

There’s nothing like experiencing ecovillage life first hand, but taking a virtual tour of Earthaven is a close second! 

The tour highlights ways in which Earthaven is striving to be a holistic, sustainable culture. The introductory overview tour examines the concept of sustainability at Earthaven through social, ecological, and economic lenses. Not only will you get a glimpse of what has worked through time, but also hear about what has been challenging. And you will have a chance to ask questions!

Thriving in Relationships — Five Tools for Success

Five Mondays 7 – 9 ET: Jan. 16, 23, 30; Feb 6, 13

Join Steve Torma in this deep dive to learn five key relationship tools: gratitude & appreciation, empathy, honest expression, needs-based negotiation, and relationship repair. These tools can improving all types of relationships, including with friends, family, co-workers, community members, and even within oneself.

Earthaven Ecovillage Experience Weekend

May 25-28, 2023

Do you want to learn skills, gain insights and get to know the Earthaven community? Get an inside look at the radical social and ecological experimentation that has taken place in this land-based community for over 27 years.

Playing at the Reaching Nature Connection Conference

Reaching Nature Connection Conference

April 1-2, 2023

East Coast Outdoor Conference for Early Childhood Educators, Teachers, Counselors, Parents and Mentors.

With this year’s theme, Joyful Play, presenters Lia Grippo and Sharon Buczaczer will immerse participants in joyful singing and the freedom of play, all in the spirit of the young child.