Coined by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren in the mid-1970s, “permaculture” intertwines “permanent agriculture” and “permanent culture” to be a holistic design philosophy based on ecological systems. It models land management and settlement design after natural ecosystems by drawing together diverse skills and ways of thinking about a sustainable future. Permaculture also extracts from indigenous knowledge, such as understanding the interconnection between people and planet as well as their different cultivation skills. With aims of creating regenerative and self-sustaining systems, permaculture is rooted in three ethics and twelve principles.  

More than landscaping or even organic gardening, permaculture is a design system for resilient living and land use.  As a design system, permaculture not only focuses on farming, animal husbandry, and forestry but also extends to energy efficient building design and general individual and household lifestyle changes.

Also, permaculture is a “worldwide network and movement of individuals,” sustained by local efforts rather than any governmental, business, or other institutional initiatives.