NonStuff Industries

Permaculture and sustainability education


NonStuff Jenny


James Chapman talks composting poo

It’s an exciting day. I’ve cracked open our first batch of humanure and it’s looking great!

We started using our compost loo 18 months ago. Our toilet is a large bucket which sits within a wooden box with a toilet seat. Next to it there’s a container filled with spruce needles from the woods behind us, which form a cover and ‘soak’. They also filter out smells. The bucket is emptied into large composting bins which are very well insulated.

This pile has been resting for 9 months. The compost is light and fluffy, with no recognisable poo and no unpleasant smell at all. It’s very similar to rotten horse manure and bedding.


Want to know more about humanure?

Autumn green skills courses

We’re pleased to be working again this autumn with the Croft Carbon College in Leith. Take a look at the courses, workshops and events on offer, and learn a new green skill!

NonStuff courses this term include:

Pocket-sized forest garden

Last month Nenya designed a pallet-sized garden for Bridgend Farmhouse. The design is inspired by the themes of One Planet Picnic and Wildlife Gardening. All plants are edible and many are attractive to wildlife. The underground part of the garden features a living soil that is rich in organic matter and is teeming with microorganisms and invertebrates which help nurture the plants.

All plants are perennial, and edible parts include fruit, flowers, leaves, roots, stalks, shoots and seeds. The flowers are attractive to pollinators (e.g. mint, raspberry, chives) and other creatures. Here’s the design description and plant list.

The miniature forest garden received 1st prize in the “One Planet Picnic” category at Dundee Flower & Food festival.

pocket garden

One-day Intro to Permaculture taster

Saturday 27 October 2018, 10am – 4pm. Ravenscraig Walled Garden, Kirkcaldy.

It’s good to be back in Fife for this one-day Introduction to Permaculture taster with Greener Kirkcaldy. We’ll be based in the lovely Ravenscraig Walled Garden. The course will cover principles and ethics, some design methods, and examples of how Permaculture can be applied to land design as well as in social contexts.

Read more on the Greener Kirkcaldy site here.

GK logo

Edinburgh PDC 2019

We’re open for bookings for the 2019 full Permaculture Design Course.
You can find the course details, dates, fees and booking information on our website here.

In line with the NonStuff social ethos, course fees are on a sliding scale of £270 – £750. The aim is to make permaculture education as widely accessible as possible.

We also offer a Friends Discount: encourage a friend to sign up with you, get 10% off your course fees.

PDC 2019

Workshops and courses in Leith

We’re really pleased to be working with the Croft Carbon College, a new community education initiative in Leith. Take a look at the courses, workshops and events on offer, and learn a new green skill! NonStuff courses include:

Make your own botanical cosmetics – course full 
Introduction to Permaculture – 8 & 9 September
Composting made easy – 12 September
Make your own cleaning products – 15 September

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Forest gardening course – open for bookings

Forest Gardening  (15 – 16 September 2018)

This 2-day course is now open for booking!

Forest gardening is an increasingly popular approach to growing food sustainably and efficiently through making use of the beneficial relationships of a natural healthy ecosystem, maximising the use of the garden’s vertical dimension, and increasing the range of perennial food plants to fill all available niches.

Read more here.

forest gardening Sep


New course open for bookings

Bookings are now open for the 2-day Introduction to Permaculture course. Go to the Courses page for more information and to book.

April 18 Intro SocMed.jpg

Of snow and compost

The 2018 Permaculture Design Course began on a crisp, chill morning at the end of January. The venue – Bridgend Farmhouse in the south of Edinburgh – looked especially fine in the snow.


The cold outside didn’t stop the creativity indoors.

Untitled design

The 2nd module – the February weekend – was a chance for practical work with compost. As well as working on the existing bays, the group helped with building the new hot compost box. The box is based on James’ design for the composting system at Leith Community Croft.  The highly insulated walls and lid lock in the heat: temperatures should reach at least 65°C. Bridgend Farmhouse will be able to compost all their organic waste (including veg scraps from the community cafe), and should have good, rough compost after 6 weeks.


compost comp

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