How to Grow Green Teepees in All the Drylands ?

Introduction: How to Grow Green Teepees in All the Drylands ?

About: Honorary Professor University Ghent

No more plastic greenhouses or tunnels needed : grow your own live greenhouse (a green teepee or a tunnel) with branches of the drought-tolerant Navajo willow, also called globe willow or Chinese willow (Salix matsudana).  One can grow these willows with a minimum of water in the drylands, even in the desert.

Such a live greenhouse offers remarkable advantages : natural shade and higher air humidity inside because of the transpiration by the leaves.

In drylands or deserts people can easily grow plants, e.g. young fruit trees and vegetables, inside such a greenhouse, which can also offer shelter against the sun heat.

Outgrowing branches of the willow can easily be pruned to construct progressively new greenhouses.  A very interesting way to combat drought and desertification.

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    4 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Hello, this is so interesting, I would love to try and make some teepees with this willow howeever it is only possible to get S. matsudana var. tortuosa which is not much usable for teepees and living structures however it is really amazingly drought tolerant. Is it possible to find some cuttings from Belgium? Or from you personally? Please, if it is possible, contact me: Thank you very much!

    wvan cotthem
    wvan cotthem

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks, Rimar2000. I deeply believe that it is possible to grow green teepees in all desertlike areas where a minimal volume of irrigation water is available. This Navajo willow is a drought-tolerant variety. It can develop and be propagated in extremely dry environment. Growing tunnels with this willow would offer great opportunities for food production inside the tunnels, in the shadow and surrounded by a higher relative humidity. Moreover, lots of climbing, edible plants (peas, beans, passionfruit, cucumber, dragonfruit, etc.) can be grown in the teepee wall.