Our last week at Rio Muchacho Organic Farm was a great, hands-on learning experience! We were introduced to ideas of agro-ecology and diversified agriculture systems. Our time spent considering the network of systems we rely on, an introduction to soil biology, the diversity in plant families, and the ecologies of different biomes in Ecuador has facilitated a much deeper understanding of food production in a culture outside of the countries we come from.
As we took the concepts from the classroom to the farm, we helped with the reconstruction of damaged garden beds, prepared the land for banana circles (a concept from the farm that allows for young banana trees to shade and provide nutrients to young coffee trees before having a fruit tree overtake the banana trees, eventually leading to a constructed food forest), planted small coffee trees amongst mature papaya trees, roasting coffee, making chocolate, but and collected nitrogen and carbon sources to start a new compost!
We left the farm this morning and spent the majority of a drizzling, coastal drive catching up on sleep. Now in a coastal town south of the farm called Puerto Lopez, we are wrapping up any loose ends in regards to our curriculum, enjoying the last few days of one another’s company, and preparing for a day of whale watching before hiking and snorkeling around Isla de la Plata tomorrow.
Much love from Ecuador,