|The Deserts of the world are tan on this map from Climate.gov|
The Groasis Waterboxx PlantCocoon (called the Waterboxx for short) was invented by Pieter Hoff, a Dutch tulip exporter who retired to find a way to help green the deserts. After copying the best concepts nature had to offer (from the lessons of bird droppings to the Lotus Effect to capillary water), Mr. Hoff had developed the Waterboxx. This device, which is initially filled up with 4 gallons of water, with another 10 poured into the soil where the plant is to be planted, is a self refilling water battery for trees and other plants. The tree is planted in the central opening of the Waterboxx, and its roots grow straight down to access the soil water column released by the Waterboxx. The Waterboxx collects dew whenever present and is completely refilled by just 4 inches of rainwater. The whole process of the Waterboxx is explained below:
The Groasis Waterboxx has been tested in several deserts around the world. Its first large scale test was in the great Sahara Desert in Morocco. Below you see the initial planting of Tamarix (salt cedar) trees in a land of nothing but dry sand. This planting took place in 2010 initially.
|Setting up a Groasis Waterboxx to plant a Tamarix Tree in 2010 - From Groasis.com|
These trees thrived. Using the Waterboxx, tree plantings in Morocco had a 88% first year survival rate, compared to 11% with the non-Waterboxx trees, which were watered weekly. When two trees are planted per Waterboxx (as intended) the chance that one of them survives is 99%. The Waterboxx was left in place until the trees outgrew them, and the results are seen below.
|The same Tamarix trees 4 years later in 2014 - also from Groasis|
Tree plantings in the desert of Ecuador were even more impressive. Below you see over one year's growth of a Beechwood tree planted with the Waterboxx. Because deserts tend to be in areas with more sun (due to location and less cloud cover), once the critical shortage of water is solved by the Waterboxx, the desert can truly bloom.
14 month growth of a tree with the Waterboxx - compiled from photos at Groasis.com
If we can establish enough trees throughout the world (for whatever reason - from lumber to nut and fruit production or shade or simple love of nature), we can not only improve the value of nearly worthless desert land to ourselves and wildlife, but we can sequester huge amount of carbon dioxide. The Waterboxx was designed for this purpose. Please send us your Waterboxx success story to firstname.lastname@example.org
You can see all our blog posts about planting trees with the Waterboxx here. We would love to hear your comments below - to leave one, please click on "Comments".