A whisper from the woods

Ask me (almost) anything, June 2023

Jun 19, 2023

On June 17, we celebrated World Day of Drought and Desertification.

In celebration of this day, we asked Mark to please share his experience and knowledge on desertification and drought, and being in the desert.

Mark tells us that he did do some work in Libya and the Middle East; Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Iraq.

“Libya was interesting. I was there in 1979, just when the US Embassy hostages were taken in Tehran. I was inspecting a site that had been developed just after WWII. It was 100 hectares of Australian Gumtree forest, and it was planted by Australians after the war. The gum trees in Libya loved the environment and did very well. It looked like Australia’s inland country!

This whole site was enclosed by high brick walls, mainly to stop people from taking the trees for firewood. This is a common situation in Arab / Bedouin cultures because for surviving in the desert, they need firewood to cook.

In fact, this is typical of the whole of North Africa and the Middle East, but we must respect the cultures and their hopes for a better life and environment. And, we can encourage and support them to be the best custodians that they can be.” Mark says.

One of the desert sites Mark worked at.

Concerning drought, Mark suggests that the starting point should involve water conservation, in relation to the local climate and weather conditions.

Make sure that available water is used wisely, by:
– preventing water run-off and evaporation,
– enabling water soaking and retention in the soil,
– and ensuring that the water catchments are well protected.

The most efficient way to manage water is through underground storage. Protection of these underground facilities is essential to prevent animals from spoiling precious water supplies.

Thank you for these tips and for sharing your experience in Libya, Mark. We appreciate the opportunity to learn from you!

Below, a few photos Mark shares from his time in the desert:


Please share this. Thank you!

1 Comment

  1. Anrich Bester

    Nice to see your photos and a younger version of you, Mark!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Other blog posts

Ask me (almost) anything, September 2023

What is an equinox, does it hold any value, and how has that value changed through time?
As this year’s Autumn equinox approaches (23 September 2023), we ask Mark about its importance and meaning.

Amazing Trees: Nature’s Astonishing Wonders

Trees stand tall as both a testimony to the resilience of life and a reminder of the awe-inspiring wonders that surround us.

Food for Thought, September 2023

This article will not only give you a start-to-finish idea of something you can prepare for your working week, but also help you crack the concept of meal-prepping, so that you can adapt it to other recipes, to your time, and your food preferences.

On Effect of Climate Change on Soil and Water in Nigeria

Climate change is having a significant impact on soil and water, which are essential components of our planet’s ecosystems.

Ask me (almost) anything, August 2023

Our community member bought a fig tree from a local nursery in Germany, and wanted to understand how they can create the ideal circumstances for the tree to carry fruit and flourish.

Tree planting & climate change

We are happy to announce that our Nigerian regional coordinator, Imam Maiyaki, is now one of our monthly Whispers of the Woods bloggers!
In his first article, Imam writes about the relationship between trees and climate change.

Food for Thought, August 2023

Finding plant-based alternatives to a beef hamburger, for example, is not so hard. Today we’ll experiment with black beans, beetroot, mushrooms, and more.

This Is Not a Tree

This poem was written by one of UBREM’s team members, Jennifer Nafziger, and it is called, This Is Not a Tree.

Ask me (almost) anything, July 2023

Mark was asked to please tell us more about their journey to Vietnam and the wildlife and nature they experienced on their journey.

Miss Bonnie in a Nutshell, July 2023

People may garden for various reasons or purposes. I’ve enjoyed gardening for as long as I can remember, but only recently have I undergone a major shift in my gardening attitude, due to my new squirrel friend.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our newsletter. Stay tuned to all our news. There is more to come.

You have Successfully Subscribed!