Principles Pyramid

The 21 cards are designed to be laid out in a pyramid pattern, crowned by the ethics and with the attitudinal principles at their base.  I give this card to students first to give them the ‘big picture’ prior to going through each principle in detail.

28 thoughts on “Principles Pyramid

  1. All in One Place… as a wondrous, well constructed home for Bill Mollison’s concepts!
    Thank you!!

  2. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong, but I can’t download the cards to print. Is there something I need to do to get the cards downloaded?

    Thank you!

    1. You need to open the page in a browser, then just right click on the photos to ‘save’ to your computer. If you open in Facebook you need to click on the top right menu and ‘open with’ your normal browser.

  3. Hi, I would like to repost this material on my blog page and also make a translated copy to the Portuguese language. I would like to ask of your permission to repost this material in this way with due credit given to you and linked to your site here. Please let me know what you think, thanks.

    1. Hi Jason. Feel free to re-post the cards on your blog site, and a link back to this page would be appreciated. It would be great if you want to do a Portuguese language version. I have people already offering to do versions in Arabic, Hebrew and Spanish and plan on making all the sets available on this site. If you like I can send you the ‘master document’ I created the cards on, and also mindmaps that go with each card and explains it in more depth. I’d like to keep each version on the site the same 6×4 format as it is usually cheap for people to get them printed as 6×4 photos.

      1. Hi Brett,
        I would be interested to re-post the cards in French on a blog site ( will start a blog on permaculture in French) with French translation, if it’s not done yet, with link to your site or just send you the translation.
        What do you think?

        1. That sounds great. I know ‘Introduction to Permaculture’ has been translated into French but it would great to make a translation of the full Mollison principles. I just ask that the full set be reproduced as it will be great to maintain continuity with each language version. I have had a few requests for the ‘master document’ I created the cards on and have decided to make that freely available too, along with the mind mapped notes I’ve made to go with them for teaching. I spend the first 2 days of a PDC going over the cards and accompanying mind maps and have also run it as a 2-day intro to permaculture course. I’m also going to put out a 2-day course outline and teachers notes to assist any PDC graduate who would like to get into teaching them as a 2-day Introduction to Permaculture Fundamentals course.

    1. If you right click on the pictures of each cards then click save they will download to your computer. You have to open in a browser and not just in Facebook though. The cards are accessible via the links on the left and are divided into ethics, energy principles, functional design principles, principles from nature, and attitudinal principles.

  4. So where is the link to the full download of these cards as stated in the newsletter?
    Blog pages are not downloaded able links.

    1. If you right click on the pictures of each cards then click save they will download to your computer. You have to open in a browser and not just in Facebook though.

    2. The cards and accompanying mindmaps are free to download. Just click on the links. You need to open in a browser and not just via Facebook.

    1. Try opening from here. You need to open in a browser and not from within Facebook, then you can right click on each card and ‘save’ to your computer.

  5. Wow, these cards are fantastic! Such a wonderful way to remind ourselves of all the Permaculture Principles…Thank you so much Brett 🙂

  6. I am so happy that Geoff Lawton pointed your cards out to me in his Friday mail!
    Beeing an old teacher myself a really appreciate the structure an inert logic of the construction of Mollisons priciples. What a great job you have done!

    The thing is that I am currently in the process of writing the first Handbook of Permaculture in Sweden. It is a horticulture aimed book, that intends to lower the threshold into Permaculture to people in Sweden that has never even heard of the concept. Often enough when I talk about permaculture with new people, they say: Perma… frost?
    There is a permaculture community in Sweden that is growing, but it is still lurking in the subculture shadowlands and needs to be explained to those “permafrosters” in a way that appeals to those who are not comfortable with doing extensive reading in English.
    My goal is than rather to get a lot of people to do something in a better way than they used to, than getting a few fully trained permaculturists that do everything “right”.
    To that aim me and my daughter, who is illustrating the book, has choosen an semi naivistic modus of the pictures, giving the signal that Permaculture is something anyone CAN do!

    I am so impressed with your way to present Mollisons principles with your cards that I would like to ask you permission to translate them to Swedish and maybe incorporate them as an appendix to my book. In the latter case I am aware that you might not want me to, since I am selling the book for a price and thus may gain some from it and that might not be ok for you. I am also setting up a webpage though, where I could provide the cards for free, in the same spirit as you so graciously have given them away online.

    I totaly understand if you don’t want me to use them in my book. I only ask, becacuse I find them SO elegantly put and useful and would like as many people as possible to see them and learn from them. I have NO idea as to how many books we can sell. We must borrow money from friends and plan to have a kickstart event this autumn to be able to print the book. So I don’t think we will make a fortune on it, but that is not the goal anyway. We just want to spread permaculture to a wider range of people in Sweden.

    Thank you again for the wonderful work you’ve done with the cards!

    Ylva Arvidsson

    1. Thank you so much for your feedback. A Swedish version of the cards would be great to see. If you can do them in the same format I can include them on this web page too. I am encouraging people to use the same order and principles names to keep some continuity, but want to see them dessimated as widely as possible so please include them in your book. I was fortunate enough to do my Introduction to Permaculture with Andrew Jeeves in 1989 and my PDC with Michel and Jude Fanton in 1990 (Seedsavers Network), and learning and doing permaculture has been my passion ever since. It fit in with my green ideology (I was a rainforest activist), but instead of just documenting the growing list of environmental disasters I suddenly had the tools to do more than just protest. I want to pay back Bill Mollison and honour his work as he has been such an important influence on my life, and I believe his vision is important to the world. That’s why I’m making this arrangement of his permaculture ethics and principles free and not doing it as a money making venture. I’m not in any way criticising permaculturists like yourself who are producing permaculture texts etc. for sale, and I believe permaculturists should get a decent salary for their work. In this case I felt I could afford to share without needing financial recompense, and realised they would be more widely adopted if I made them free to download. I am also tidying up a set of 22 A3 mindmaps that I give out as class notes when teaching permaculture, and will be making them free as well along with teachers notes on how to run a two day course using the cards and notes.

    1. Try opening in a browser and not via Facebook, then you should be able to right click on the cards and save them to your computer.

  7. Thanks again for giving me the chance to help you raise money for the Penan project!

    GoFundMe says that if I publish the link on Facebook the donations may triple.
    Could somebody please publish the link on Facebook or twitter or whatever? I haven’t been engaged in those online communities whatsoever, so I’m hoping somebody reading this will broadcast the link so that those of us who have regarded these cards as a special treat can help the person who made them available to us!

  8. Thank you so much for this lovely gift! I am new to Permaculture, I have so much to learn and these beautiful cards will help me on my journey. 🙂

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