Chinese Ecovillage Needs Permaculturists & Natural Farmers

Jenna Xidai
Wednesday, 18th June 2014

After being evacuated in 2013, Chinese ecovillage 'The Second Home of Lifehanyuan' have taken on new land and need permaculturists and natural farmers to teach them how to grow organic food so they can live sustainably.

China's largest ecovillage project, the Second Home of Lifechanyuan. We are now looking for global permaculture and natural farming experts to give us guidance in our new farms. 

China's largest ecovillage - the Second Home of Lifechanyuan, which was established in May of 2009 and developed very well during the past five years in Yunnan, but was forcibly disbanded by local authorities from November, 2013 to March, 2014 with the reason that they worried that one day our community would develop into an 'illegal organization', and regarded us as a potential threat to the stability of Chinese society. Due of the strong faith in God and our dream, we never give up and now, we have gone through the most difficult period and have found three new farms to settle, starting in April of 2014.

Among the three farms, two are located in Xinjiang Province in the Gobi desert and one is near China's east coast. We are now in the process of restoring 600 mu (100 acres) of land. We are hoping to implement permaculture and natural farming principles to transform the lands into fertile farms which will be able to produce healthy, high quality organic foods, but because we lack practical experience, especially with regards to the knowledge of plant characteristics, we are finding it difficult to carry out the production and other work in an effective way. We are therefore cordially inviting global permaculture and natural farming experts to come here and coach us.

We expect to begin our first work in Xinjiang. The main challenges here are to grow the right grasses, crops, and trees in the saline-alkaline soils, and to prevent the desertification of the land. This dry area receives almost no rain throughout the year and the irrigation water is mainly from underground aquifers and from rivers. In the long run, we should consider how to reduce the exploitation of these aquifers and rivers in order to maintain the balance and sustainability of the ecosystem. We should also learn how to reduce or eliminate our use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides in the production of these healthy organic foods.

Because of the disbandment, our financial strength is currently very weak and anyone who is willing to teach us must understand that this is all volunteer work and we are not able to afford to pay for your travelling expenses or any consultation fees. We are however, able to take care of your local transportation, accommodations, and meals, and because our community is an all resource-sharing community, you would have access to all of our material resources while here.

For more details on the background and situation of our three new homes, please check:

http://lifechanyuan.org/bbs/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=7057

We look forward to volunteers who are selflessly dedicated to the sustainable development of humanity coming here to offer us coaching and guidance in the implementation of permaculture and natural farming on arid land.

If you are interested in this exciting and challenging project, please write to lifechanyuan[at]sina.cn 

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