On its desert farm in Wahat El-Bahareyya, SEKEM wants to reclaim 63 hectares of desert land through sustainable agriculture and supported by a crowdfunding campaign. Here is update number 4!
Video Update No 4
Almost three months after sowing, we were able to harvest the first peppermint plants. 8,5 hectares of former desert land brought already more than 6 tons of fresh peppermint – after drying, the weight will shrink to about one ton and can then be poured as a delicious tea.
Although we are very excited to harvest the first crop, the yield was not the primary reason for harvesting. Rather, trimming of the plants is used at this early stage to encourage root growth, which will support the plants resilience and forming denser leaves – thereby yields will be higher in the longer term.
The next big harvest is scheduled for early September. All in all, we expect approximately 2 tons of fresh peppermint per hectare in the first year.
The other half of the field, which was planted with peanuts, is planned to be harvested for the first time in October.
Art and culture in the desert
In addition to the first successful harvest on former desert soil, we have already made some efforts to promote the community building and development of employees in the rough area. The about 50 co-workers of the SEKEM Farm in Wahat El-Bahareya have recently had frequent visits from art educators from Heliopolis University. Together, they painted, did eurythmy and even juggled. In the months before, there were already music workshops and information courses on the subject of plastic. Starting in September, these courses will be held even more regular and become an integral part of the life of the staff at SEKEM Farm in Wahat el-Bahareyya.
Reported by Narimeh Paeplow who takes care of the campaign in Egypt