Darren J. Doherty’s early career and approach to farm design

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Darren J. Doherty is the founder of the Regrarians Platform, a fast growing and very supportive network of farm planners. Darren started his designing career in Permaculture and soon developed a close mentoring relationship with Bill Mollison. As one of the first designers in the industry to use a software to design farms, Darren has taught over 300 programs and planned over 3000 farms around the world. In these interviews Darren share his background, his involvement and departure from the  permaculture movement and how he developed his own approach to farm planning heavily underpinned by P.A. Yeomans’ Keyline Scale of Permanence and Allan Savory’s Holistic Management.

As a fine dining chef Darren was influenced very early in his life by a strong and organic farm-to-table movement in Tasmania. Eventually this experience led Darren to manage an organic grocery shop in Bendigo, Victoria. During the time Darren used to run the organic grocery shop in Bendigo, farmers used to use him as a vehicle to know what the other farmers were growing. Darren shares that this was how his consulting career subtly started, and that with the exception of the designing element, his role as a consultant has remained very similar to this day. That is, thinking about a particular farmer’s practice and success and how those practices and approaches would apply to another farmer.

Inspired by the work of Masanobu Fukuoka even before becoming a permaculture designer, Darren shares his client-driven and minimalist approach to farm planning and design. Darren’s cost-effective and elegant approach was bettered even further when he brought Holistic Management into his toolset.

In the next interview instalments Darren share his involvement and departure from the permaculture movement as well as how he developed a client driven approach that focusses as much in Management and cost-efficiency for clients as it does in Development. Moreover, Darren shares the evolution of his career, how he founded the Regrarians Platform as a collaborative endeavour rather than a spring-board for self-promotion, and finally how Holistic Management has helped him develop many streams of income and a pricing policy that allowed him to stay in business while also enjoying quality of life with his wife and children.

Darren J. Doherty is coming to the Northern Rivers to teach the course “Forestry in Practice” on the 9th and 10th of February, 2019. This two day program equipping farmers to holistically integrate trees in their landscapes and enterprises. The classes will be run at at the Holos Regenerative Design site in Brunswick Heads, where two agroforestry systems where implemented using a hybrid approach that combines a Keyline® layout with successional agroforestry.

Those keen to learn how to integrate agroforestry systems in their properties to build drought resilient farms, increase profitability and biodiversity, can still enrol for the course through this link.