Ulu Permaculture is a permaculture and farming consultancy based in Malaysia and Singapore.
Our vision is to see more people grow food in an ethical and ecologically responsible manner. Leaving big businesses to grow our food has so far brought us poor health, environmental degradation, and a disconnect from Nature. Growing food is empowering; satisfying one’s basic needs is key to reclaiming some self-reliance and resilience. It nourishes our body, community and spirit. Touching soil creates an intimacy with Nature that most of us lack today. Through this intimacy, we hope to reignite a sense of land stewardship common in many indigenous cultures.
Our team’s experience is gained from years of working in diverse environments across tropical Asia. From the leached compacted soils of Singapore to the rich volcanic soils of Indonesia, from tree-sheltered gardens to exposed rooftop farms, from sandy soils by the beach to eroded red clay soils. These experiences have given us insights that cannot be gained by specializing on any particular site. We don’t just design and consult from an office; our skin is sunkissed and our fingernails filled with soil.
Thomas’ interest in farming and permaculture stems from a belief that they can solve many of the global issues and crises in humanity we are witnessing today. He wants to farm in a way that creates abundance without depleting natural resources like soil, water, fossil fuel, and biodiversity. Thomas has been farming in tropical Asia since 2011, starting from the outskirts of Hong Kong close to the Chinese border, to within the mountains in rural Southeast Asia, to rooftops in downtown Singapore. He is a certified Permaculture Designer and an ISA Certified Arborist®. Before all of this, Thomas studied finance and economics in New York before working in the finance industry for 5 years in Hong Kong. He is also a Natural Movement trainer at Human Naturally and one of the few beekeepers in Singapore.
Imran’s first encounter with permaculture/natural farming was when he was volunteering in a farm in Malaysia in 2010. He then decided to make it his life. He started out building small scale permaculture gardens and since then, has worked on various projects in South East Asia. He is a certified Permaculture Designer and is a student of Geoff Lawton.
His interests include nature, soil, homesteading, ancient medicine and kampong living.
Tham Siang Yu
Siang Yu is a former translator, interpreter and environmentalist, participating in the UN climate negotiations while also working with youth environmental groups in Singapore. Dissatisfied with campaigning without action, she went on to work and live with farming communities in France, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. She has been farming in rural and urban environments since 2013. In her work, she designed food gardens for schools, restaurants and homeowners, and has also taught workshops and programmes on organic gardening, food security and building communities. She completed her Permaculture Design Certificate in 2016. Her interests are in low-impact living, animal husbandry and education.
Will is a co-founder of FOLO Farms. After spending the first 7 years of his career as a civil engineer and family business sidekick in Malaysia’s grueling construction industry, a quarter-life crisis led him to pursue further studies in Public Policy and International Affairs. Joining Singapore’s public service, he headed, and had headaches from, a dynamic all-women team managing the country’s International Organizations portfolio at the Economic Development Board. After 2 years of passionate work, an unexpected third life crisis hit him when he found himself physically overweight and emotionally unable to accept an offer to be posted overseas. With the support of his amazing ex-boss, he foolishly embarked on a year in search of meaning, somehow always ending up on the grounds of Plum Village. These days, he is thankful that he can just grow food with his loved ones for his loved ones, relieved that he will not be facing his next life crisis alone 🙂
You are a gardener, and you have in your hands the power to transform garbage into flowers, into fruit, into vegetables. You don’t throw anything away, because you are not afraid of garbage. Your hands are capable of transforming it into flowers, or lettuce, or cucumbers.
― Thich Nhat Hanh