Camel thorn is a deep-rooted desert plant that grows in arid and semi-arid areas, and is highly effective in preventing wind and fixing sand. In order to master its adaptability to survive in harsh environments and expand artificial cultivation, researchers at Cele station cultivated it in giant “pots” of nearly 2 meters high through seed planting.
Cele Desert Ecological Experiment Station was established nearly 40 years ago and created a comprehensive protection system of dry zone quicksand management, so that the quicksand front back 6-8 kilometers, basically lifting the threat of quicksand to the county, so that the wind and sand front 38 natural villages of agricultural production is effectively protected. On this basis, the researchers further enriched and improved the sand control system of the desert front into a comprehensive protection system of the desert-oasis transition zone, and established a three-dimensional agricultural system of “grain, cotton, fruit, mulberry and grass” in the transition zone. In nearly 10,000 mu of experimental demonstration area, wheat yields increased by 65% and cotton yields increased by 48.4%.
Photos: Excavation of camel thorn root system (left) and root system reaching deep into the groundwater (right) (Photo credit: Xinjiang Institute of Biotechnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences)