Bert grew up on the edge of a forest in Flanders. Very soon he played in that fantastic scenery with forests, fields, empty farms and enjoyed being surrounded by wilderness. A period of nature conservation campaigns and travelling ended up in Tazzie around 2000. Bert loved the permaculture immersion overthere during his wwoofing period. Inspired by visits to permaculture projects and people like David Holmgren and Robina McCurdy ,Berts heart kept on pushing towards the dream of a permacultural educational farm. And that is what still keeps speeding up his heartbeat.
He started planting a forest garden at his grand-parents place in Flanders. For 11 years he worked as a gardener in a waldorf community. The combination of working with the land and people has always fascinated him. Together with the foodforest, his teaching skills in permaculture were growing. For the first time in 2006 he organised a PDC course, since then he travelled around the country to talk about permaculture and show people how to start with it. Now he’s teaching PDC courses at various places throughout the country. As soon as the People and Permaculture book came out, it was used during Berts PDC courses. Together with Lien he went over to Monkton Wyld last year on a PPDC course. Hosting Looby on a people and permaculture course at “his own” food forest project feels like a dream coming through.
Bert found the inspiration during this course to quit his job and devote (nearly) all his time to put up a meeting point for people and permaculture in practice. From January on the project received a grant to put up permaculture gardens for children, create educational picknicks and host different courses and workshops. His specific interest points are living soil, every edible plant, creating forest gardens, mushroom cultivation, gardening with the elements and creative designing.(I love school gardens).
“It’s easy to design and build a forest garden. The most important and underdeveloped part is the people part. Let’s pull down our own fences and learn, play, work together. Permaculture can’t survive without the peoplecare.”