|Balloons Over Cappadocia|
With grocery stores on every corner and convenience stores on every block, the connection to our food (myself included) becomes distant at best. We get hungry, we buy a bag of chips, or an apple. We get thirsty, we buy a bottle of water, or a soda. Supporting local farmers, and food co-op's are becoming more and more popular. However, for the most part we rely on someone else for all of the food we consume. What if you didn't have that option? What if you lived in an area with extremely challenging geography, limited finances, no vehicle, and only small markets to serve immediate needs? While hiking in Central Turkey we saw exactly what you could do.
We recently visited Cappadocia in Turkey (Kapadokya in Turkish and pronounced the way that is spelled). This is a region in the Asian part of the country and is quite isolated from some of the more populated areas in Turkey. There are several towns that make up this region but we stayed in Göreme. Göreme is in the center of the 'Lunar Landscape' that has made Cappadocia so famous to tourists. Volcanic cones dot the arid landscape, some of which served as homes and churches thousands of years ago. People in the area still live in carved out homes inside the soft rock, but most of the cones (also known as Fairy Chimneys) lie empty.
|Volcanic Cone Diagram|
|Volcanic Cones with Doorway in the Middle|
|Volcanic Cone in Foreground Abandoned Cave Homes Beyond|
|Water Shaped Valleys|
|Stone Cliffs in Pigeon Valley|
I could also see how they managed to transport water to all of the planted area. The area slopes slightly from higher to lower ground moving away from their dwelling and they have created terraces along this slope. They have formed a reservoir at the high end of this slope to collect water that falls from the stone cliffs above. The water is then moved (by hand) along a long trench around the entire planted plot. Smaller channels branch off of this outer trench and feed the individual planted furrows. Some larger shade trees have been left to protect the growing plants from the harsh sun. I have put together a few sketches below to better illustrate all of this.
|Blue: Reservoir//Yellow Arrows: Large Perimeter Trench// |
Blue Arrows: Small Feeder Trenches
|Terraced Farm Section|
|Farm Nestled in a Few Cones|
(Could the Cones Act as a Dam for Water to Help Irrigate?)
|Farms from 1,500' Feet|