Paula Westmoreland                         

 Paula is an agroecologist and permaculture designer.  She has an MLS from the University of Minnesota in ecology, sustainable agriculture, and landscape design.  Paula received her Permaculture Design Certificate in 2000 and started Ecological Gardens that same year.  In 2001, she began work on the plant database, knowing that an easy-to-use online tool with plant ecological functions and human uses was critical for polyculture and guild design.

 In 2003 she co-founded the Permaculture Research Institute Cold Climate.  At PRI she has been Executive Director, organized and led workshops, helped develop “Work and Learn” weekends, the Backyard Harvest program, and the Urban Farmer Certification program.

 In 2003 she also began work on the Perennial Lands project which culminated in a GIS map identifying opportunity lands for perennials throughout Minnesota and a book, This Perennial Land: third crops, blue earth and the road to a restorative agriculture that provides a vision for restoring ecological health to Midwest corn and soybean country.  Paula is currently working with watershed groups to host visioning workshops for landowners.

 Paula is passionate about connecting people with nature and jumpstarting healthy ecosystems. She has broad-based permaculture design & installation experience including hundreds of urban and rural homesteads as well as commercial properties and rooftop farms.  When she isn’t designing and mentoring, Paula can be found hiking, gardening or exploring new places.


Related Education and Training

  • Grinnell College, BA Anthropology, 1975
  • University of Minnesota, MLS Ecology, Sustainable Agriculture and Landscape, 2000
  • Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute, Permaculture Design Certification, 2000
  • Teacher’s Training with Dave Jacke, 2008
  • Soil Food Web Series with Elaine Ingham, 2008
  • Edible Forest Garden Workshop Series with Dave Jacke, 2009
  • Ecological Design and Urban Permaculture Strategies with Toby Hemenway, 2010
  • Regenerative Design Series with Penny Livingston, 2011
  • Holistic Management and Keyline Design with Neil Bertrando, 2012


This Perennial Land: third crops, blue earth and the road to a restorative agriculture, 2010

Map Your Place: A Permaculture Workbook for Growing Food, in process