Copyright 2004 - Progetto Humus




This process will be realized in a crush in kolchoz “10th anniversary for the OCTOBER REVOLUTION” in MOLCIANY (Recitsa province, Gomel region, Belarus).
The crush found after 2 years of research it’s a grass and metal structures of 10.000 mq with an heater able to maintain a minimum internal temperature of more than 15°C when outside there are –35°C. Inside of it cucumbers are cultivated twice a year (harvest in June and Sept). 26 people work on it.

In the crush the main experiment of the HUMUS project will be led in order to produce non-contaminated products in a contaminated area
2000 crush mq will be used. The agronomic technique that is proposed is the so called ”soilless ” technique.
It consists of the possibility of producing plants without its traditional component which is the soil.
We have already in ancient times examples of cultivation without soil (there are tracks in egyptian hieroglyphs before Christ examples in Babilonias gardens and in Mexico (Atzechi).
This technique allows the development of plants without the utilization of the soil, using more or less inert means as a substratum (sand, peat, vermiculite, pumice – stone) in which a solution containing all the nutritional elements necessary for the plants is added.

As far the Chernobyl accident contaminated areas are concerned, the “soilless ” cultivation is now the only one which answers to the need of freeing cultivation from the soil radioactive contamination and ecologically it’s justified by environmental conditions which are not suitable for traditional cultivations.

The proposed methods are the “substratum cultivation” and the “floating system”.
For the substratum cultivations a peat will be used (a non – contaminated peat of course) which is present in all belarusian territories. The use of a substratum method is relatively easy and economically sustainable at a local level. The HUMUS philosophy wants to use local resources both human and technological in order to create new forms of “economic colonialism” and not to allow, with illusion of rapid solutions or through co-operation and strong contingency, the rising of conditions which could not permit on adequate course and on autonomy of scientific potentialities, human and cultural present in Belarus.The use of a peat in a vase concerns the cultivation of cucumbers and tomatoes with he aim of respecting nourishment habits (it is the cucumbers case) and giving impulses to cultivations previously present but not yet adapted to the contamination reality (it is the tomatoes case).
The floating system or the cultivation system in deep waters it’s instead a cultivation technique in “ hydroponic ” relatively easy which allows to grow plants on movable floating supports inside tanks built in a very simple way and filled in with water and nutritional solution. Leaf species will be cultivated (lettuce) which represent new element looked for the deficiency of present nutritional contribution in a vegetable field in Belarus.

Before starting the real experiments belarusian technicians and agronomists will be formed with specific stages in italian institutes of research.

The aims and the results of the Molciany agronomic experiment are the following:

  • the first result will be valued according to “life quality”. As we have already mentioned the soilless cultivation is the only one which allows to free cultivation from the soil radioactive contamination and to give back to inhabitants…..  once expropriated by the nuclear accident. The parameter of valuation will be the harvesting of “ clean vegetable”

  • the impulse to kolchoz micro-economy may be valued, using the off soil technique with a productive growth of about 40 – 45%.
  • The chosen cultural species allow in protected cultivation more annual cycles.
  • The initial low costs, the utilization of substratum and the floating system and their non – complexity, the utilization of local materials grants a management and financial autonomy of the techniques proposed at Molciany and their exportation
  • The attention on kitchen-garden cultivations represents in a way a restitution of traditional and cultural elements . We have to consider, indeed, that the Gomel region (like many other areas in Belarus) it’s an authentic steppe converted into cereal cultivation according to soviet planned economy which transformed traditional farmers into state workers. The kitchen-garden cultivation was born in a slavy area and it’s part then of this cultural tradition and of this ethnic instinct while corn is not a local product but comes from south-east.

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