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Is it possible to build a micro ecosystem in a desert place? Are there any kind of fungus or microspecies which can enrich the soil in dubai

Is it possible to plant a lot of trees and build a huge green community in Dubai, where they can form a micro ecosystem? I know the place is covered with desert. But is there a way in the long term to grow natural plants using integration of different technologies? They built palm island, so why not build a forest itself?

  • Dec 26 2012: Ecosystems in arid or semi-arid regions comprise of vegatative islands separated by large areas of seeminly lifeless exposed soil. However, in these "empty" spaces, at least in natural settings, are communities of biological soil crusts (BSCs) that comprise of microorganisms within the top several inches to a foot of soil. It is these BSCs that aggregate soil particles and provide stability and protection from wind and water erosion. Such microecosystems can be maintained or generated using organic refuse, such as treated sewage or similar types of compost.If you are talking about the creation of an oasis of sorts, then this would be highly unsustainable and require massive amounts of water. If you can learn to live with the landscape, I suggest looking around the undisturbed deserts. You will be surprised at the quantity of life that exists.
  • Nov 30 2012: yes its very posible,, in fact its more than that,, i have a plan to do this , but as usual people dont see the bigger picture
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    Nov 30 2012: There is no ecological point in palm island and 'to build a micro ecosystem' self-sustainability should be a major concern to create more than just another 'fancy playground'.

    In desert regions irrigation is key to any ecosystem and using groundwater bears the risk to finally exhaust it on the long run. Maybe we could learn from nature itself and by a little fellow named Namib Desert beetle.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dqs8ypFonn8&feature=plcp (part one is missing)

    This beetle survives in desert regions by its '...unique technique ... by obtaining water from early morning fogs' collecting on its 'bumpy back surface'.

    If this humidity harvesting methode works for this insect, it may also become scaleable and transferable in some simple technical device. In combination with a precise dosing of this collected and regenerative water given to a local vegetation, a new foundation to an micro ecosystem could be layed.

    Personally I would be careful to experiment with alien fungus or microspecies which are not native to the Dubai desert, as they may cause more problems than they would do good in the absence of natural regulators.

    The maximal growing capacity of this ecosystem would be limited by the maximal 'water harvesting' capacity and the natural amount of rain in that region. Water storage and precise dosage could be optimized and automated for maximal performance. If this was enough to grow and maintain a forest depends on the humidity level at sun rise and the efficiency of how much of it could be harvested and lossless handled. On this I have no data.
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    Gail .

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    Nov 29 2012: I've watched tours of the earthship homes in the desert of New Mexico. These homes are incredible, and only cost what a typical house costs. They operate off the grid - completely. They create their own energy, which grows much of their plant food, which adds oxygen to the homes and cleans the water that they collect and recycle. They have heat and air conditioning and all the comforts of home. They are exceedingly beautiful as they use the desert and its materials to their advantage.
  • Nov 28 2012: Of course I am sure it has been done many times One can also slow or reverse desertification Don't people in a desert in a movie dream of an oasis?