Reverse Desertification
© Lloyd
Reverse Desertification
Allan Savory's Holistic Managed Grazing (below)
Women's Bioreclamation fruit trees in West Africa via http://cgiar.org

Planting Acacia trees in rows in Senegal, other trees in Dubai, other crops sometimes between tree rows

Planting Opuntia Cactus in Brazil
Peter Westerveld's contour trenching method: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPdHcAuRKuQ&feature=player_embedded

Drought resistant plants for landscaping

In Israel:
Growing alternative plants: algae, argan trees and olive trees
Floodwater collection system with trees or shrubs, esp. legumes
Drip irrigation
Wastewater management
Solar energy to replace need for firewood
Climate Responsive Architecture to eliminate need for home air conditioning and heating
Genetic Engineering

How do you restore desertified grassland?

The essential process is based on soil restoration, beginning with mostly bare, dry ground.
It uses any of a wide variety of animals as grazers, from cattle to goats to sheep to bison [or camels, llamas, alpacas, horses, deer, ostriches, emus, roos, or other herbivores]. There are many variations in the process because every parcel of land is different, as are the people who take care of it. Taking this into account is why the planning part of Holistic Planned Grazing is so important.
Accordingly, first and foremost a Holistic Grazing Plan is created in order to manage livestock properly in their particular and unique habitat. The animals are herded in tight groups in relatively large numbers, confined to small paddocks (pastures), having intense but brief impact on the land (several hours to a few days). They eat the grasses or forbs available, the more diverse the better (Provenza 2007). Usually, with proper planning, there will be something for the animals to eat, only rarely will it be necessary to supplement their diets with other feed.
The desired plants that are eaten are carefully and continually observed for signs of overgrazing (defined as when a plant that has been bitten severely in the growing season gets bitten severely again while using energy it has taken from its crown, stem bases, or roots to reestablish leaf it has been overgrazed). As mentioned earlier, an essential elements of Holistic Management, is the feedback loop, that is, Plan (and assume that original plan may have been wrong) - Monitor - Control - Replan.
During their first impact on degraded soils the animals break the soil cap with their hooves, fertilize it with urine and dung rich in gut bacteria, and trample plant matter into the soil surface, including dead grasses which interfere with new growth. This disturbance stimulates soil-life activity by circulating oxygen, carbon dioxide and other gases, by providing nutrients, by allowing penetration of water (Weber 2011) and by providing land cover, to minimize or eliminate bare ground (Naeth 1991). Special attention is paid to ground cover because bare ground is how soils are lost to the wind and the rain; bare ground is solar energy lost to living things.
To restore the land, it is of great importance [for the herd] to cover the ground with dung and trampled grass in order to increase the effectiveness of the rainfall, so it soaks into the soil rather than runs off. (McGinty 1995). Grassland biodiversity flourishes as the area of bare soil diminishes.
These pictures are of neighboring properties in Mexico, Arizona, and Zimbabwe, respectively. They are taken on the same day, have similar soils, and the same precipitation. The pictures on the right are examples of properly managing livestock through Holistic Management to restore grasslands. On the left we see examples of improperly managed livestock as well as exclusion from grazing.

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