Anyone looking for a permaculture tropical paradise to buy in Panama? Or perhaps on Maui?

By Michael Pilarski , January 9, 2016


1) A friend in Panama just tipped me off that Luminosity Farm on Bastimentos Island is for sale.

60.8 acres. I knew my good buddy Bruce Hill was living in Panama for the last 10 years and planting a permaculture agroforest there. Bruce is one of the best permaculturists I know and his specialty is agroforestry systems and guilds. I don’t know the price but the sales pitch sounds expensive. And one of the things that makes the price tag so high is Bruce Hill’s permaculture planting. This is true value.

I have mixed feelings about gringos buying up local land in many parts of the world and driving up local prices, but establishing permaculture models that are beneficial to locals is worthwhile. It is great to see some photos of Bruce and his plant community. If anyone ever sees Bruce tell him to email Michael Pilarski.

There are a lot of photos including plants and a network of canals and ponds.

Their website is

Also there is info at


2) Kanahena Farm on Maui is selling a portion of their property.

The link to the Panama property is Bruce Hill. Bruce developed and planted Kanahena Farm with farm owner, Michael Howden. When I visited Maui in 1996 and ensuing years I became friends with both of them. They started planting in 1986 and when I visited ten years later it was one of the best agroforestry systems I have ever seen in person. The trees are much bigger now. Michael Howden passed the property on ten years ago, but the plantings are still there. There are lots of photos of their lush landscape which is surprizing since it is set in a dry part of the Ulupalakua district. The price tag is $1.1 million.

Now, I realize that very few of my readers will have the means to buy either of these properties. The point I wanted to make here is that permaculture plantings are valuable. They can really make the price of a property go up. They hold their value over the long run. Buildings and human infrastructure run down but plants are reverse entropy. They just get better (or that is, the planting gets better) over time. We need a lot more people permaculturing their properties. Making them biodiverse, ecologically rich, economically productive and beautiful.

If anyone wants to attend my next Permaculture Design Course it will be held in Seattle over 6 weekends from March 4 to May 22. See details on this website.


MICHAEL “SKEETER” PILARSKI is a life-long student of plants and earth repair. His farming career started in 2nd grade and his organic farming career began in 1972 at age 25. Michael founded Friends of the Trees Society in 1978 and took his first permaculture design course in 1982. Since 1988 he has taught 36 permaculture design courses in the US and abroad. His specialties include earth repair, agriculture, seed collecting, nursery sales, tree planting, fruit picking, permaculture, agroforestry, forestry, ethnobotany, medicinal herb growing, hoeing and wildcrafting. He has hands-on experience with over 1000 species of plants. He is a prolific gathering organizer and likes group singing.