Permaculture

It all starts with the living land

Our property-wide master plan includes regenerative agriculture, innovative new enclosures and gardens for our animals residents, and expanded rehabilitation facilities.

Considering the ongoing global reduction in wildland preservation and increasing animal extinction rates, we’ve resolved to broaden Earthfire Institute’s outreach locally, nationally, and internationally through the launch of four key initiatives. Our top priority is the renovation of the site’s animal facilities, outdoor animal gardens, and pasture, starting with implementing permaculture principles that include regenerative agriculture practices.

Kareen Erbe in her garden

Permaculture is a holistic approach to land use that is particularly relevant today. It works with natural cycles and is respectful of flora and fauna, seasonal changes, water usage, and maintenance. We’ve hired Kareen Erbe, owner and founder of Broken Ground, to lead the property enrichment project.

“This is an exciting project in so many ways,” says Kareen. “I haven’t worked on a permaculture design that has wild animals at the center of the project. It’s an opportunity for innovative ideas to surface and has already been a wonderful learning experience.”

“Is it not possible that a place could have huge affection for those who dwell there? Perhaps your place loves having you there…could it be possible that it could sense your presence and feel the care you extend towards it?”

John O’Donohue

We anticipate completion of the project within five years with the most essential portions⁠—permaculture, animal habitats, and infrastructure improvements⁠—wrapped up in three years. It’s a significant investment with an end goal of increased comfort for the animals, expanded rehabilitation capacity, and infrastructure to make the sanctuary more accessible for customized visits and retreats.

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We’re incredibly grateful for all donations that have made it possible for us to embrace this plan for the future. It’s reassuring to know that there are so many people with the heart and charitable means to support our efforts on behalf of all beings.

“We’re looking forward to a future of reliable sustainability and long, healthy lives for the animals under our care. Above all, we aspire to spur action that better serves our natural world. Our very lives depend on it,” says Executive Director, Susan Eirich, PhD.

Earthfire depends on your support to make our work possible.