“The best permaculture course I’ve ever done”

Our small Milkwood crew works super hard to offer our students the best possible learning experience. Since 2007, we’ve helped 14,500+ happy students learn new skills for a more sustainable life.

Here are some recent course reviews from our students…

Permaculture Living five-star rating

Of 1065 Permaculture Living, Home Mushroom Cultivation and Organic Vegetable Gardening students surveyed, 953 people gave the course a four- or five-star rating (met expectations or exceeded expectations). The average customer satisfaction score for both courses is 92% (very satisfied).

Permaculture Living course reviews

Hannah Lewis
“I have been interested in permaculture and wanted to do a course but am not in a position to do the more intensive one. This was a great option for me, very accessible.
“I realised we are doing a lot of things that fall under the permaculture umbrella, but this helped me to identify gaps and areas where we need to make more of a commitment and take more action. It is well worth it.”

— Hannah, Victoria, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Marina Brill
“My’ ah-ha’ moment came when I realised that if every household made important changes, we could together make a huge impact on climate change and help our beautiful planet in so many ways.
“This journey with Milkwood has helped me so much. I will continue to evolve as I grow from the knowledge and from the tools learned in this course, and the marvellous thing is that I get to continue learning and sharing, as I have access to these beautiful people forever.”

— Marina, Auckland, New Zealand
Permaculture Living student

Rahim's course review
“I studied agriculture but in our university, we did not even hear the word ‘organic’. My teachers insisted on chemical agriculture.
“I’m very happy when I took the premium Permaculture Living course at Milkwood. At the same time, I started an organic strawberry farm and used permaculture lessons. Now I am very satisfied. I hope I can promote this technique in my country to ensure the health of soil, people and animals. I am glad to have found a better way.”

— Rahim, Kabul, Afghanistan
Permaculture Living student

Jenn and Carl's course reviews
“The Permaculture Living course was just what we needed. The positive and practical information really worked for us, complemented with short clips and multiple choice of activities for us, as students, to choose. It enabled us to move forward, set our goals.
“The 12-week course may have ended, but the permaculture community we have entered into gives us a feeling of gratitude. This is just the beginning, as we support each other’s journey forward, knowing we are all heer for each other. Thank you. xxx”

— Jenn and Carl, Riddells Creek, Victoria, Australia
Permaculture Living student

“I took the plunge after doing a Holzer Permakultur course here in Austria. It was awesome but out of our league at present. I’m very happy I did the Milkwood course. It felt approachable, doable.
“The video lessons are down-to-earth, the information shared with a definite ‘you can do it’ feel. Support is also super; comments and questions were answered in a flash. I would absolutely recommend this to anyone wanting to dip a toe into the world of permaculture.”

— Karin, Steiermark, Austria
Permaculture Living student

“I am a Permaculture Design Certificate teacher. I took Milkwood’s Permaculture Living course – it was a privilege having the chance to learn directly from David Holmgren, a co-founder of permaculture.
“Course content was presented with lovely videos and rich, action-oriented content – but, above all, with great enthusiasm and a lot of fun. I will recommend it to all my students. Thank you very much!”

— Dr Murat, Izmir, Turkey
Permaculture Living student

Tanja's Permaculture Living course review
“Being a personal trainer with a growing client base, I worked 24/7, while serving ready-to-go food for my family. Then at one point I thought: ‘How crazy is that?! I try to inspire others to live a healthier lifestyle, but fail to implement it in my own family or for myself.’
“Luckily a good friend pointed me towards a permaculture course with Milkwood. The day I signed up, everything changed. We all enjoy our homegrown greens and homemade cheeses. I still teach exercise as a way to stay healthy, but much more along the lines of community, mindfulness and health. I haven’t looked back once! Lovin’ our new life.”

— Tanja, Victoria, Australia
Permaculture Living student

“I loved doing this course and I am glad that I chose the option to keep accessing the course material as there is so much to learn. I signed up for the course for two reasons – to learn as much as I could about permaculture but also to stimulate my brain. The online access and navigation was easy and engaging.
“My biggest ‘a-ha moment’ was when I realised that I was already on my permaculture journey and didn’t know it. The course gave me structure and made me think about the choices we make every day. I would definitely recommend the course to others.”

— Marisa, Kyneton, Victoria, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Niki's Permaculture Living course review
“I signed up thinking the course would teach me how to plant a veggie garden. And then I watched, fascinated, as it instead showed me how to connect the strands of my life and what I care about. I’ve mended an old, much-loved jumper, tracked down bulk food shops and farmer’s markets, installed a solar system, connected with my community, made sourdough and, oh yes, planted my very first veggie patch.
“I’ve loved the energy and encouragement from the Milkwood team, which made me feel that any step I took was awesome. I really appreciated the quality of the materials presented throughout the course. The experience has been truly affirming and my journey will continue.”

— Niki, New South Wales, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Kathryn's course review for Milkwood's Permaculture Living course
“I thought that the course might help me with some challenges I had in my garden; little did I know my whole life and outlook would change. I hold these weeks of instruction dear to my heart, as integrally meaningful for my future and the future of those around me.
“The course is totally ‘friendly’ to navigate and one can spend minimal time with each principle or chapter, or reams of time pouring over fascinating videos, books and articles recommended as resources. The Milkwood instructors are absolutely charming and engaging; beware, their passion for the Permaculture Life is contagious.
“I began to feel empowered to make a difference, to make things happen. I strongly recommend this course to everyone, all ages, all walks of life, in every climate and in every corner of our dear Earth. For our survival and that of future generations, changes must be made and they must start within each of us.
“Thank you Nick, Kirsten, David and the incredible Milkwood Team. You are all excellent and have given so many such a beautiful gift. You motivate; you inspire; and you empower. THANK YOU!!”

— Kathryn, Santa Ana, Costa Rica
Permaculture Living student

Craig's Permaculture Living course review
“In the midst of COVID lockdown, I was made redundant. My wife suggested that, instead of seeking alternate employment straight away, I extend my knowledge in something that interests me. Milkwood serendipitously popped up and I enrolled.
“Through Milkwood, I learned that permaculture envelops not just self-sufficiency, but an entire ethos around how we live our lives. For me, the emphasis on kindness and well-being (both to one’s self and the community), struck a chord.
“My culinary skills had a definite upgrade, and I am absolutely loving creating in the kitchen. Last weekend we had our first entire meal, from what we had grown, an achievement for us personally, and wholly satisfying. My journey has only just begun and I thank Milkwook for such an amazing introduction.”

— Craig, Kellys Plains, New South Wales, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Anna's Permaculture Living course reviews
“I’ve loved doing the Milkwood Permaculture Living course. I was already a gardener and starting to think more about permaculture principles in my gardening, but this course really made time reconsider my whole life (or zone 0).
“I had worried that it wouldn’t be so relevant for me, based in the UK, but because it’s about so much more than just gardening (food resilience, eating, community…) it suits anyone anywhere.
“I focused my goal on the word ‘nourish’ – myself, my family, and the natural world around me. And all my actions aligned to this goal. I have found wonderful local food producers, tried plastic-free shopping, growing sprouts and microgreens. I’ve learned to identify and eat local weeds, and make my own bread and probiotic drinks. Homemade yogurt and cheese are next on my to-do list.
“Alongside considering energy, waste and my carbon footprint, my biggest learning has been around food resilience and local food producers. And we’re eating better while saving money!

— Anna, Warwickshire, United Kingdom
Permaculture Living student

Lucy's review of the Milkwood Permaculture Living course
“This was my first-ever online course, and I was pleasantly surprised by how engaging it was. The course is delivered in a very organised, well structured, thoughtful way, and the actions each week are a great practical way to keep engaged and reflecting on the information delivered. Such an important course for these days, I will continue to delve into the ideas for life.”

— Lucy, Broome, Western Australia, Australia
Permaculture Living student

“What a game changer! Doing the Milkwood online Permaculture Living course not only gave me such a great insight into permaculture and how I can easily integrate it into my life, it also actually raised my self-esteem – because I was so proud of myself for completing the course.
“If you are thinking about doing the course – don’t walk, RUN! You’ll have no regrets and nothing but adulation for the Milkwood crew. The new skills you learn will be a daily integration in your life. User-friendly, kick-arse, this course has everything! Videos, text, easy-to-do assignments, and self-paced for people like me, who are time-poor but curious about the world. Bravo Milkwood. More courses please!”

— Lou, Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Read our student ‘case study’ article on Lou’s Food Is Free project.

Sheridan Peters' Permaculture Living course review
“This is the way we all should be living. This course is so gently taught – every action we take to look after the planet and each other is one step closer to a better world. Thank you to Kirsten, Nick and David! I hope to have my own permaculture property in the future, but until then the things I have learnt have already shaped the way I do things. If you’re thinking about taking this course, do it – you won’t be disappointed.

— Sheridan, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Milkwood Permaculture Living course reviews from a student
“Milkwood’s Permaculture Living course is like stepping into a virtual almanac, where you learn through doing, watching, and seeing immediate and long-term results. No written submissions or assessments, it’s completely self-driven at your own pace with almost daily support from tutors, who are walking the walk of sustainable living and People Care.
I would recommend it for all learning styles and all living environments. It’s a very adaptable and relevant course for now and in the future. Most of all, this course brings a sense of self-empowerment and hope for the future on a personal level. Milkwood’s Permaculture Living course embodies all that you need to know to get your lifestyle moving towards a wholesome and abundant life with security and community.”

— Katrina, Warrugul, Victoria, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Ahbi's course reviews of Milkwood's Permaculture Living online course
“I thought it was a wonderful course, which shows you how to integrate the principles of permaculture into your daily life. The course was super easy to navigate through and there were a lot of examples of how you can live regeneratively. I’m definitely going to be taking away how easily you can become self-reliant and how important it is to think through your daily actions.
I would 100% recommend this course to anyone regardless of if you want to start a farm or not (I’m learning that permaculture is actually different to growing and starting a farm).”

— Abhi, New York, United States
Permaculture Living student

Irene's Permaculture Living review
“There are so many great things about this course. So many things to learn and share, but the thing that comes to mind the most is how grounded and peaceful I feel when delving into each lesson. I can forget about all my other worries in life for a while and just find myself in nature with a group of like-minded people. It just refreshes me every time.
“I haven’t got it all down-pat yet, but there are so many tools and resources I can keep going back to and keep learning from. It gives me a sense of being more in harmony with the natural world.”

— Irene, Tasmania, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Zarghuna's Permaculture Living review
“I am from Afghanistan where is war more than 40 years, our land destroyed by different wars. Last year Rosemary introduced me to Milkwood permaculture course. It was really, really helpful – what they showed us was practical work. I started to plant where I live, everywhere, in pots, plots of land. I made a greywater system for my small garden. I am planning to grow mushroom in my house and am composting from my kitchen every day. My garden looks happy and healthy.
“This year, because of my knowledge, I and my husband are teaching permaculture at a private school for the first time in Afghanistan. We all are very very happy with this system, to be part of the people who care about Earth.”

— Zarghuna, Kabul, Afghanistan
Permaculture Living student

Barbara's course review
“Taking this course at home, where I love to be, has been encouraging, inspiring and motivating. In my goal statement, I wanted to become more food independent and I am on way – woohoo! I am building a stock of preserves, jams and dried fruits. I am baking, making our food and picking from my garden to include fresh foods as often as I can.
“I am about to establish a crochet club in my new studio for my local community to learn how this wonderful craft can enhance your life, making reusable cleaning clothes and personal use items such as face cloths and clothing.
My approach to not only my garden but everything I do has changed for the better. The best way I can describe a permaculture life is one that is rich in rewards to mind, body and soul. I know I have so much more to learn and look forward to.”

— Barbara, Queensland, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Mirranda Burton
“Signing up to the Permaculture Living course was my partner’s idea. I was wrapping up a long and challenging chapter of my life, and he imagined it to be an ideal catalyst for transition. As soon as the first module kicked off, an anchor was cast in my life. I’d never known such a delight in weeds and hawthorn berries before, and as each week brought new discoveries, I realised I was acquiring new tools to adapt to an uncertain and rapidly changing world.
“I hadn’t previously realised the depth and breadth of permaculture as a living system, and my journey has far from ended. Inspiring, practical, community building and committedto  the realisation of a better world; this is a course that has been clearly made with love.”

— Mirranda, Victora, Australia
Permaculture Living student

Read our student ‘case study’ article on Mirranda and the beaut graphic illustrations she created while studying with us.

Home Mushroom Cultivation course reviews

“To celebrate my first harvest of oyster mushrooms, I made a mushroom radicchio risotto. Not much to look at (most risotti aren’t) and yet it made me incredibly happy to have gotten this far. I stumbled onto the Milkwood Home Mushroom Cultivation course quite by accident. There’s a lot to absorb, and it can feel overwhelming at times — but then I’m someone who sees everything at once and only slowly do I make sense of the whole.
Like Alice down the rabbit hole, I sometimes felt that for every two steps forward I was taking one step back. Mushroom cultivation is both incredibly simple — and complex. Very smartly, Kirsten and Nick pace the course in such a way that one thing builds on the next.
Each week I looked forward to more from this genial and knowledgable duo, and was grateful for the support of their team, who were right alongside me as I worked through the modules. Had I not done the course I likely would have been limited to mushroom grow kits. Instead, I am scaling what I’ve learned to suit my needs, looking to see where I can create a mushroom log grow in the garden, and learning to dry and ferment my harvests, the better to take advantage of what I am growing. As I head off on my own exploration of mushroom growing, I have Milkwood to thank for getting me started”

— Jenny Stein, County Wicklow, Ireland
Home Mushroom Cultivation student

I loved the mushroom cultivation course! Weekly online tutorials were so enjoyable, easy to understand and well presented. I liked that we were given different ways of adapting techniques and methods, it made mushroom growing seem much more achievable.
The extra resources and links each week were fabulous too, great for additional interest or learning. And the bonus courses of growing on logs and in the garden were awesome! I’ve grown on recycled cardboard, my buckets and garden grow are well underway.
Aside from the actual growing aspects, I loved the initial introduction to fungi and background knowledge. An excellent course!

— Lisa Forrest, NSW, Australia

Home Mushroom Cultivation student

“My search for alternative foods to eat began and mushrooms became my favourite meat substitute because I can cook so many varied and delicious meals with them and they don’t upset my stomach or gut health. This left me with a problem though, I needed more mushrooms and they’re not cheap or fresh in the supermarket. The solution was simple… learn how to grow them.
I researched and looked over many hours of YouTube mushroom grows but I really wanted to grow mushrooms properly and without too many failures. I came across the Home Mushroom Cultivation Course – well that was it, I put my name on that waiting list and the rest as they say is History!
This course gave me the confidence to grow wonderful mushrooms easily and sustainably, it added to my permaculture sustainable lifestyle, allows me to take better care of my health and best of all it gives me so much joy. For me mushroom growing is so rewarding!
Kirsten and Nick made this self paced course so much fun and I had many laughs along the way. The Milkwood team are so quick to answer questions and give guidance if you ask, the forums are full of information and great people. Seriously if you want to grow your own mushrooms just sign up to the Milkwood Home Mushroom Cultivation Course – its the best :)”

— Fiona Wall, NSW, Australia
Home Mushroom Cultivation student

“I love Mushrooms! Totally excited that I took this course. Life is busy and I needed to get the ”Right” answers on how to grow mushrooms. Well, this is the course if students want them too.
I now am growing them in buckets in my fruiting chamber! Yay!! I have made a lot of mistakes (which you covered those areas nicely too). My á ha’ moment came when I got frustrated and threw out my cardboard spawn (mold growing along with mycelium) and then it rained. Well to my surprise, mushrooms started growing all over the cardboard…just like you said. Then I check my buckets, and they were busting out with pinning shrooms! Needless to say, I was extremely happy.
This is changing my Life in so many ways. I know that if someone wants to save themselves a lot of money, they need to get on board with this Mushroom Cultivation Course. The cost of all those mistakes I have made in the past were far more expensive. Thank you, Kristen & Nick!”

— Tina Weaver, Florida, USA
Home Mushroom Cultivation student

“I am Bemeriki Bisimwa Dusabe a refugee from DRC living in Uganda, as a permaculture practitioner and teacher, I found this course of home growing mushroom very important, especially for people who are living in refugees camps and settlements where the land is small.
I have been much involved in teaching permaculture, growing vegetable and herbs, now mushroom is the good and easy approach to the refugee and people like me. For a decade and half living in Uganda as a refugee, I have never seen a good approach of improving lives of people through small scale growing food like mushroom.
I recommend this course to more people, especially youths and women.”

— Bemeriki Bisimwa Dusabe, Kamwenge, Uganda

Home Mushroom Cultivation student

Milkwood Permaculture Design Certificate reviews

Our face-to-face Permaculture Design Certificate courses (PDCs) ran from 2013 to 2018, during which time we taught over 700 students.

“After spending nearly 10 years in the sustainability field and fully immersing myself in our social enterprise, Food Connect, I wanted a space where I could consolidate a lot of my knowledge and to learn new ways of creating an ethical future. Milkwood’s PDC allowed me to place all this stuff in my head into a simple design framework, and equally affirmed many design elements within our enterprise.
“The expertise of the teachers was second to none, and their method of creating community through meaningful connections over the two weeks fulfilled all of my expectations. I’m ready to take this ethical design framework to the masses – the future is now!”
— Emma-Kate Rose
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“The autumn PDC at Govinda Valley was an unforgettable experience that continues to resonate long after its completion. Not only was I hugely inspired and impressed by the absolute dedication, unsurpassed knowledge and passion of the teachers and speakers, I also had the opportunity to be in an intensive learning environment with a fascinating and multitalented collection of individuals, whose friendship I now treasure. It was a genuinely life-changing two weeks.
“The knowledge, skills and insights into the whole permaculture ethos which I gained on the PDC have continued to inform my design practice as well as my day-to-day interactions in ways that I didn’t anticipate, but fully appreciate. So many of the principles work as functional guidelines for the broader challenges we face as designers, educators, parents … humans. I signed on for fun and skills, and I got those – and much, much more. If you have been hesitating, wondering whether the PDC is for you, I urge you to stop wondering and just do it!”
— Patricia Munro
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“I came away from the course armed with the skills to design a space according to Permaculture Principles – care of earth, care of people and fair share. Thanks to the generosity of the Milkwood teachers I was able to enjoy the process of challenging my thinking.
“The PDC gave me the skills I needed to be more confident about growing better backyard fruit and vegetables. I have been able to engage my husband and two children with the process we are undertaking, and as a family, we are enjoying our different roles. I have come away with ideas for my future projects, including starting a local community garden, helping my girls’ school with their veggie garden, helping people living with dementia, supporting sustainable agriculture in developing countries and reusing food waste in hospitals.
“I can thoroughly recommend the Milkwood PDC as a great learning experience, which will challenge your thinking on many levels. It is a good mix of practical skills and thought-provoking discussion.”
— Robyn Mackenzie
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“What a refreshing experience! I had grown so accustomed to the typical university lecture room (someone snoring in the row behind me, someone shopping on eBay in the row in front of me) that I was perhaps a little shocked by how enthusiastic a classroom of people could be. But no wonder, the Milkwood crew and their guest educators were such eloquent speakers and experts in their fields, and despite this, very down-to-earth human beings too!
I was very impressed by the diverse content on the course and how the days were structured (it was very unique, progressive in fact, like education from the future). And boy it was pleasant to be in a room full of so many like minds! I am very fond of all the folks I met on the July 2014 PDC and look forward to running into them all again. Since completing my PDC I have looked into starting my own Permaculture Design business and will be attending the next Advanced Permaculture Design Course to really hone in those more specific skills for business, site and client management. I really can’t wait! Milkwood has opened a door in my mind that I wasn’t aware was there.”
— Luke Costelloe
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“This is a game-changer… in January 2015 I embarked on a journey that I didn’t even see coming! With Nick Ritar facilitating the core of an incredible and diverse Milkwood teaching crew, we were absolutely blessed to learn from a number of inspiring, uplifting and highly experienced individuals. A truly amazing and unique experience, I found the PDC with Milkwood to be enriching and transformational. It has given me a thorough understanding of permaculture as a whole, highlighting our individual connection with nature, the communities around us and most deeply, our connection within ourselves.
“I find myself reevaluating, even questioning many aspects of my life. When you sign up for this course, be prepared to invite positive change into your life, become accountable for your actions and be an advocate for making this world a better place. Sounds dramatic right?
“If I could bottle up this experience and hand it to you, I would. Words simply won’t do it justice! A huge thanks goes out to the wonderful group of fellow students with whom I shared the PDC experience, and to all the beautiful humans at Milkwood. I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way, and it’s wonderful.”
— Nicole Packham
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“I recently completed Milkwood’s Permaculture Design Certificate in Redfern, and WOW – it was really mindblowing. I have always been at the edges of a permaculture lifestyle, but too caught up in city life to really go any deeper. Then we bought a plot of land and I figured this was as good a time as any to take the bull by the horns. And I am so glad I did. After just two weeks, I am armed with a ridiculous amount of knowledge that will enable us to build a sustainable house, with a bountiful garden that won’t just be an afterthought – it will be designed at the same time as the house, so they work together. In addition, I have learned to think a lot more about where my food comes from – not just my veggies, but everything. In fact – not just food – I’m evaluating my whole lifestyle.
“But it’s not overwhelming or scary – the great Milkwood teachers have presented the information in an easy-to-digest way. It was intense at times, often hilarious and occasionally quite shocking. But I’m confident that I’ll be able to go off and build a beautiful permaculture lifestyle. Not only that, but I met a great bunch of like-minded people – it’s the first time I’ve really thought: ‘Wow, these people think the same as me – on every subject.’ We made great friends and had lots of fun – and will share each other’s permaculture journeys from this point on. Thanks to Nick and the team for a fabulous, mindblowing, life-changing experience.”
— Claire Lane
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“I’m so happy with the PDC I did with Milkwood it has been one of the raddest experiences I’ve ever had. Nick is a great educator – always engaging and passionate and delivers the content dynamically. Brendan is very engaging, extremely interesting, and dynamic. Narelle was very willing to give one on one feedback – creates a comforting relaxed vibe – excellent and forthcoming educator.”
— Andrew Kurek
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“I’ve been studying and practicing permaculture since my early 20s, which is about 30 years ago. I did my Milkwood PDC in January 2016 and enjoyed every bit of it. Awesome teachers, great content and so much fun spending two weeks with like-minded people. For a life-changing, mind-bending, soul-renewing experience, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything better than the Milkwood PDC.”
— Meg McGowan
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“I did the PDC course at the Rooftop Garden in Redfern in Jan 2015. It was an amazing experience and it was great to meet and learn with the other participants from all different walks of life. I loved the group work activities and working on our individual maps and planning a cafe using the permaculture principles. I found it consolidated what I had been doing in my garden for over 30 years and gave me heaps of new ideas which I have now implemented and wow, how my garden has benefitted with crop rotation, worm towers, green-manuring and composting.
“The presenters were dynamic, intelligent and all spoke from their personal experiences, which gave credibility to their expertise and presentations. It also helped me rationalise why I love gardening and living on an organic and biodynamic farm, and I feel so much happier and less isolated. I now feel empowered to share my journey, garden and knowledge with others and to write a book capturing our story.”
— Judi Unger
Permaculture Design Certificate student
This course is highly likely to change your life. It’s that good. Amazing course content, brilliant teachers and the chance to hang out with a group of like-minded people. It’s a total luxury. I can’t think of a better stepping stone for making a positive change in your life towards something more sustainable, more healthy, more satisfying and more connected. Don’t think about it. Do it. You won’t regret it.”
— Kathryn Scobie
Permaculture Design Certificate student
A Milkwood course is an unforgettable experience. Taught by great teachers; the chance to mix with like-minded people brimming with enthusiasm; learn a whole heap of new stuff; try a few sustainable things out; come away with masses of good ideas; the start of a new-networked life. The stuff you learn on a Milkwood course changes the way you look at the world – forever. I did mine in 2009 and it was the best course I have ever done. Can’t get enough of the good stuff.”
— Stephen Couling
Permaculture Design Certificate student
“This is a fantastic learning experience for anyone who is interested in understanding how to nurture nature and in turn have nature nurture us. It is one of those life-changing programs that you only get to experience once or twice in your life. The teachers as a collective were extremely knowledgeable, delivered effectively structured content and exercises, and created an environment conducive for honest sharing and mutual learning. I was lucky enough to be on the residential course where 80% of us stayed on site – a lovely way to connect with a really diverse bunch with common values… friends and allies to keep for life. Thanks a million, Milkwood xx”
— Shelley Logan
Permaculture Design Certificate student

Past Milkwood course reviews

For more than a decade, we ran face-to-face courses on everything from market gardening, natural building and warré beekeeping to fermenting, cheesemaking and more. In that time we taught more than 8,000 students.

Ashlee Wilkinson Newscastle testimonial
“I’ve been researching mushroom cultivation by myself for the last couple of years, completed a basic intro course, started an online commercial course and have spent a LOT of time reading and listening to everything I could get my hands on. Doing the Milkwood course with Nick has really flipped everything from being overwhelming to really, really easily achievable. I honestly feel way more confident and prepared, and recommend this course to anyone interested, especially those getting bogged down in the theory, so they can make the leap to mushy reality!”
— Ashlee Wilkinson, Newcastle, Australia
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at 107 Projects
“The love and fascination Nick has for fungi is well and truly transmitted through his teaching. You leave the course with a new respect for mushrooms and their role in the world. This course has a plethora of information for anyone wanting to grow mushrooms at home or even to scale up to a small business. Nick clearly explains various processes you can use in different contexts, emphasising sustainable and earth-first practices. You come away feeling inspired, excited, and a little nervous about how obsessed you may become.”
— Emmy King, Buena Vista Farm
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at 107 Projects
“I found Milkwood’s cultivation course well-rounded, involved and reaffirming for me. The weekend was more hands-on than I had anticipated, which I think was particularly beneficial for beginner growers. Nick was an articulate facilitator who allowed an open exchange of information between the participants, orchestrating an organic flow of dialogue throughout the sessions. I found this particularly valuable, as some great conversations, ideas and theories were shared during these discussions. A great experience for fungi lovers and amateur mycologists.
— Tash Nicholls, Margaret’s Mushrooms
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at Hepburn Primary School
“The knowledge imparted was delivered with such passion in such a palatable way, and the whole operation was so slick and impressive. The important part was that there were no judgments, that the permie way was a Choose Your Own Adventure, and it was accessible for all. 10 out of 10, I’ll be telling everyone and anyone who will listen to me the wonders of the Milkwood crew and how awesome permaculture is. Bravo Nick & Kirsten – it was an honour to spend two life-changing days with you.”
— Lou Ridsdale, Food is Free Ballarat
Introduction to Permaculture student, at Hepburn Primary School
The course far exceeded my high expectations. Though it was largely classroom-based, Tim Malfoy’s presentation was intensely practical and informative. He pointed us to heaps of other great resources to learn more – suitable both for novices like me, and others who had some or lots of apiary experience. The afternoon spent with the bees, beginning to identify the amazing complexities within the hives, was reassuring and really ignited my interest. An excellent course!”
— Dr Jane Basden, GP, Hazelbrook, NSW
Introduction to Natural Beekeeping student, at Rahamim
“This weekend course reinforced much of the way we grow, but there were plenty of tips that I have taken back and used to tweak things, making me a little more efficient. The resources supplied are great, I just need a few extra hours a day to go through them! Jodi was enthusiastic and inspiring.”
— Fiona Haywood, Salad Ways Veggie Boxes
Biointensive Growing student, at Hepburn Primary School
Carin Campbell
“As a 50-something professional, retirement planning is never far from my mind. Consequently, I have set a course to explore a shortlist of personal interests. Fungi cultivation was on the list, and I wanted to take a permaculture-centric approach. Having browsed Milkwood’s book, I figured I’d be in good hands. The course far exceeded my expectations in terms of technical and scientific content, which was a delight. Nick has a depth of knowledge and a passion for the subject which was ‘just right’.
“Going forward, I feel confident that fungi production is within my capabilities as a source of interest, experiment and revenue, which is due to the straightforward delivery, course material, and post-course support provided by the Milkwood team. Many thanks indeed.”

— Carin Campbell
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at Hepburn Primary School

“I loved everything about this course, from the practical hands-on approach on day one, right through to the vast amount of information shared. I was surprised at how much of the information shared actually stayed in the old grey matter.
Nick is a great presenter, his helpful tips and incredible knowledge will be useful to me for the rest of my mushroom growing life. And I am so happy that my mycelium is running strong in my bucket and grain spawn. I also love the fact that you are forced into action immediately, otherwise we will lose that gorgeous gift of liquid cultures. Excited to get really get going. Thanks, Milkwood team.”
— Ellen Mariner, who attended with her best friend Stephen Quintano
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at 107 Projects
“Being in my 60s, I have attended quite a few courses over the years, and this was indubitably the best course I have attended! The presentation was comprehensive, informative, riveting and contained the right balance of mental and experiential information. The presenter was approachable and good fun. I soon felt totally at ease. After attending the weekend I feel completely inspired to start my home mushroom business with all the online and course tools provided.
“I don’t normally go around recommending courses to people but I would definitely do so with this one. Thanks so much, Nick and Milkwood. You are doing a great world service.”
— Stephanie Franks
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at 107 Projects
“The course was brilliant! So many highlights – the background information on fungi was priceless. I had done some research myself but being able to have a conversation, led by someone who actually grows their own mushrooms day-to-day, really helped me make sense of it all and absorb the relevant bits.
“The hands-on elements were very well managed. Plenty of opportunities to get involved and this resulted in taking home our first success stories with inoculated grain spawn and substrate that we contributed to. The additional take-home syringes were also a great way to get us moving when we got home.
“The post-course information, forum membership and general support is perfect for getting us going and then joining a community of folks driven by the same exploratory motivation. In general, the whole event was a highlight for me. I’m super grateful. Thank you so much, Nick and the rest of the Milkwood crew.”
— Justin Channells, Goulburn, NSW
Gourmet Mushroom Cultivation student, at 107 Projects