Campus Permaculture Garden

About Us 

The St. Lawrence University Campus Permaculture Garden is located directly behind Commons College and is open to all St. Lawrence University students and faculty. The Permaculture Garden was founded in 2011 and is focused on integrating the practices of permaculture in our campus community. Permaculture is the combination of "permanent culture" and "permanent agriculture", and is a form of land management. Permaculture focuses on incorporating sustainable designs to landscapes that try to mimic natural systems as closely as possible. Permaculture can be applied to a variety of designs such as waste water facilities, buildings, ponds, roofs, and gardens. Our Campus Permaculture Garden is focused on utilizing the ideas of permaculture in a small-scale setting that will allow for a sustainable and well-designed garden.

Upcoming Events

April 19th - Permaculture Design Certificate Course 


The permaculture garden is always in need of volunteers, student or faculty, to help keep it maintained. Stay tuned for announcements about volunteer opportunities. 

Interview With Cat Bennett: One of the Original Permaculture Garden Members 

What was your dream/goal when creating the garden? 

"By the time I got to SLU in the Autumn of 2012, plants were established. Jess and Cindy were on the Adirondack Semester, so I was the only student who knew anything about the garden. I spent my first year simply getting to know the landscape, and scoping out opportunities for student involvement. The idea had been to begin a permaculture club, separate from Seed To Table, that would truly focus on the practices of permaculture, not just row-cropping. Over time, a core group of students, including myself, decided to combine STT and the Permaculture Club to increase student power. Our consistent and biggest issue was having people to work in the garden on a regular basis."

What purpose/who would you like the garden to serve?

"Personally, I think that intersectionality and diversity is key to the survival of the garden. Bringing as many people and ideas together will create more growth and strength than isolating a club in the perfectionism of the permaculture philosophy. That said, the garden needs LOVE. Needs a core group of people to work with the garden throughout the growing season. I see the garden as a potential gathering space for classes and ceremonies, a source of food, nourishment, and fun. A place for students to be hands-on learning, getting dirty, without having to find transport off-campus, or work around someone else's schedule..."

Do you have any advice for people getting involved with the garden?

"The best advice I can give is to spend time in the garden. You cannot learn permaculture in the classroom, permaculture must be the classroom. Interact with the plants, get identification books out of ODY and just spend time learning. Greet the insects and fungi. Get other people involved. Dump your food scraps in the compost bin. Understand how the plants respond to the weather, the sun, the soil. Build soil, build soul. No matter what the season, there is an infinite amount to learn from the garden itself. "

Interested In Working With The Sustainability Program? 

Apply to be an In-Residence Community & Food Coordinator in the Masters of Arts in Leadership Program. Find more information about this position at

Contact Information

Sara Ashpole (Current Seed to Table Advisor) :

Permaculture Garden Instagram Link:

Permaculture Garden Facebook page: