Tunisia: Sidi Bouzid - Cocoon Trees to Be Planted in Dry Areas

Tunis/Tunisia — A new cocoon tree plantation project in barren areas was launched in Bouhedma in the Mazouna delegation (Sidi Bouzid governorate).

The five-year project consists of planting 18 olive trees in March, 18 olive trees in April and 330 olive trees in September, using the Dutch cocoon technique.

This technique, known as cocoon planting technology, involves planting trees under drought conditions in relatively inexpensive biodegradable cocoons.

"The cocoon serves as a water tank that is filled once at the time of planting. It is designed in a way that prevents evaporation and the emergence of weeds around trees. Water is transferred from the tank to the roots using two strings. When the biodegradable cocoon is decomposed after a period of time, it becomes an organic substance and a fertiliser for the soil, leaving small basins that collect surface water during rainy periods. The plant will not need a follow-up irrigation afterwards, according to the website of the agriculture magazine Filaha.com.

This experience is the first of its kind using the new Dutch technology for planting trees under drought conditions in arid areas in the region, said the president of "Sada" Association.

The project is carried out by Sada Association for Development and Ecotourism in Bouhedma in collaboration with the Institute of Arid Regions (French: IRA) in Medenine and the German Association for Scientific Research in Hamburg.

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