Our tireless helpers, Anya, Autumn and Russell, and our faithful work-study Jordy from Sumba Island, were re-invigorating and bringing our Mandala Garden back into its wonderful design. All individual areas were covered with coconut shells (left from our coconut oil production) and the new plantings are emerging and peeking out from in between. Covering the soil with the shells, fewer weeds will grow. The coconut shells serve another very important purpose as well, slowly decomposing to become a great fertilizer and compost for the future plants. In addition, the coconut shells help reduce our water consumption by protecting the soil from the sun during the dry season and stop erosion of the soil from the heavy rain during the rainy season.
In the tropics printed signs bleach in no time, due to the strength of the sun. Previously written signs on bamboo sticks faded and decomposed within a month. Based on these experiences, the current solution is to use plastic pipes and markers. Autumn is preparing the signs. At this point this method has proven to last much longer. The Mandala Garden, aside from being a symbolic design and a pleasure to the eyes, produces our fresh organic vegetables for our consumption.