Monday, 16 Nov, 2009 Science

Scientists Turn Desert Into Lush Green Area


A real miracle was created by a scientist from the Permaculture Research Institute. Geoff Lawton managed to transform a lifeless desert into a lush green area, where people can grow food trees and mushrooms.

Lawton and his group were given about 10 acres of extremely salty and flat soil 400 meters below sea level.

The green area is located 2km from the Dead Sea. To be able to create such an oasis, the researcher needed to apply unconventional farming practices. The materials that Mr. Lawton used included plastic strips and tons of synthetic chemicals and fertilizers.

The initial idea was to develop a lush forest where edible plants would grow. In addition, everything was intended to be made without polluting the location with hazardous chemicals. The team of scientists managed to develop a system that helps gather rainwater into swales surrounded with mulch. The nitrogen-fixing trees found on the uphill side, create shadows that cover water tanks, thus preventing evaporation. As for the downhill side, researchers used it for planting fruit trees such as citrus, date, palm and pomegranate trees.

In about 4 months, the garden gave birth to the first figs. Besides, the researchers noticed that the levels of salt registered a considerable drop, which led to the appearance of mushrooms that started growing under the mulch, informs EcoWorldly.

After their successful project, scientists started thinking that it would be possible to turn other deserts around the world into green areas by using organic materials and rainwater.

Posted by Maxriter

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