Stunning Images of a Mongolian Tribe Who Ride Reindeer and Hunt With Eagles

When one first glimpses the photos below, they’re struck with a profound sense of awe and wonder. Surely, such a tribe couldn’t exist – one that naps with reindeer and trains wolves to hunt for them, right?

Well, modern man in his limited thought might not be able to conjure such a way of living, but to the Dukha people in Mongolia, such is a well-accepted way of life.

As The Plaid Zebra shares, the nomadic Dukha people of Northern Mongolia share a fascinating connection with the region’s animals and landscape. Embracing the rugged terrain, they’ve made a life herding and riding reindeer, training wolves, and teaching golden eagles to hunt for their clan.

As the photos captured by photographer and researcher Hamid Sardar-Afhami convey, they have a lot – in spirit and in health – to show for such efforts.13 year old eagle huntress Ashol Pan; Mongolia

The tribe’s intimate relationship with the reindeer affords them many benefits. The Dukha not only use animals as hunting steeds and use their milk to make cheese, they procure an extra income through tourism by offering reindeer rides, crafts and performances to travelers.

The Dukha people also hunt rabbits with the assistance of their highly-trained wolves and golden eagles, which they are able to trade for about $2 (USD). Wild elk and boar are also hunted by the tribe.

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

At present, only about 44 Dukha families remain, which amounts to about 200-400 people. Even the reindeer have diminished in population, with only about 600 currently living.

Sardar-Afkhami, who carries a Harvard Ph.D in Sanskrit and Tibetan Studies, documented the Dukha people in his 10-year journey through Tibet and the Himalayas.

Some of his striking photos of the enchanting Dukha people follow:

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

Credit: Hamid Sardar-Afhami

If you are interested in learning more about the Dukha people, watch The Reindeer People created by Sardar. In the film, he documents the seasonal migrations of one family as they “move with a herd of about a hundred reindeer through a sacred forest inhabited by the spirits of their ancestors, who communicate to the living through songs.”


Economic Isolation Has Turned Cuba’s Coral Reef into a Living Time Machine

In 1992, at an Earth Summit at Rio de Janeiro, Fidel Castro, the leader of Cuba, gave an extraordinary speech on ecological preservation entitled Tomorrow Will Be Too Late. Near the conclusion of the said speech, Castro stated that we have to pay our ecological debt, more so than foreign debt. True to his word, in 1996, the Cuban Ministry of Fishing declared a 150 km stretch of archipelago off the Southern coast of Cuba as a protected area, which meant that no activities were to take place there that would have the potential to distress the ecological system of the region.

Almost 20 years on, Jardines de la Reina (Gardens of the Queen), is one of the most preserved coral reef region in the Caribbean, if not the world. Going underwater is like going back in a time, you are transported to an ocean floor that would have existed about 100 to 150 years ago, not tampered by our technological progress.

Despite the protected status, one of the main contributing factors for the Jardines de la Reina’s immaculate state is Cuba’s economic isolation through much of the last century. Driven by an austere dictator and governed through Communism, Cuba was left to stand on its own after Soviet Union’s fall. In any other country, the system would have collapsed but in Cuba the people were more resilient. They resorted to homegrown solutions to much of the technological advancements they were deprived of. The same holds true for farming as well. Unable to import pesticides or fertilizers, the Cuban government launched campaign after campaign to encourage local farmers to adopt greener methods. The government’s effort bore fruit and the Cuban farming sector went through an organic farming revolution through much of the 1980s and 1990s.

The employing of green farming techniques had a two-fold effect. First it prevented synthetic fertilizers and pesticides from leaching into the ocean and wreaking havoc on the biodiversity there. Secondly, it helped the local mangrove population to thrive. Mangroves share a symbiotic relationship with many fishes who use them as breeding grounds. A healthy number of fishes mean that the corals are flourishing as well. This in turn results in an abundant mangrove population because coral reefs act as the first line of defense against belligerent waves that have the potential to erode away the fine sediment mangroves grow out of.

Additionally, Cuba’s homegrown crop of marine biologists take immense pride in preserving the Jardines de la Reina. They often spent days in the area researching the ecological dynamics of the region, tag and track the two main predators of these waters, Grouper Goliaths and Caribbean Sharks, and also employ various esoteric techniques that have developed out of Cuba’s lack of streamlined scientific contact with the outside world.

The effect of strict environmental protection here can be gauged from the resilience of the corals. For instance, when the surface water temperature reaches a certain threshold, coral bleaching occurs. In coral bleaching, the algae that cover the corals and are its primary source of food and protection, leave under stressful conditions like high temperatures and pollution. As a result, the coral is left exposed to the elements, loses much of its nutrition and turns extremely pale or white. Coral in this form is very susceptible to diseases and most varieties dies within relatively short timespans. For example, the rare Elkhorn coral can barely survive a few days under such conditions.

reeefTherefore, in 2005 when surface temperatures in the Caribbean reached a 125 year high, most of the coral population in the region was decimated. To add to intense temperatures, the region recorded unprecedented hurricane activity. Consequently, in many places 90% of the corals vanished. This means that since 1970, the Caribbean has lost nearly 50% of its coral cover, including a whopping 95% of the remarkable Elkhorn coral. However, Cuba is a different story. Here the corals have had extraordinarily efficient recovery from bleaching events. This can be attributed to the pristine marine conditions there.

However, the Jardines de la Reina is under threat. Its remarkable preservation is in part due to its relative isolation. With the potential lifting of the international embargoes imposed on Cuba, this region could see an economic boom due to skyrocketing numbers of aquatic tourism. As much as this would help the Cuban economy, it could have a potentially detrimental effect on the region’s biodiversity and ecological balance. A chief contributor to these negative impact would be Cuba’s neighbor, the United States.

Barack Obama’s administration have initiated a thaw in the Cuba-U.S. relations, after decades of cold animosity between the two nations. This has resulted in increased freedom for U.S. citizens to travel to Cuba after the relaxation of travel restrictions. Now, many would come to enjoy the excellent scenery of the country, both above water and under. This could really harm the natural order of things. As Washington-based, marine scientist and president of the conservatory organization, Ocean Doctor, stated in an interview to Public Radio International:

We’ve all seen the track record of the United States: we tend to mess things up that we love, and there are a lot of different interests now with their eyes on Cuba. So one of our projects is working with the Cubans on developing good decision tools for the future — and that includes environmental economics; helping the Cubans put a price on their natural ecosystems and to look at alternatives, like sustainable eco-tourism.”

In conclusion, without a shred of doubt, the Jardines de la Reina is a sparkling jewel in the crown of marine conservation. It is a natural laboratory of sorts that could help researchers preserve embattled coral populations across the Earth. However, it remains to be seen how the immaculate nature of the region could be affected by increased human footprint. As of now, it is just like that you have stepped into an alternate reality where the humans understand and reverse their ecological impact on the Earth’s environment.

by LJ Vanier

This is the Worlds First 100% Solar Powered Airport

by Amanda Froelich| India is introducing massive reform to tackle its air pollution problem and has begun by making a major solar power investment. As Mother Earth News reports, Cochin, a city in the South Indian state of Kerala, recently announced that its international airport will run completely on solar power from 46,150 panels laid across 45 acres.

After having six of its cities make the top 10 list of places with the worst air pollution, the country is seeking to ‘go green’ and remediate the issue. At present, India has committed to building 100-gigawatts (GW) of solar by 2022 and will also be making its airports a lot greener.

The airport in Kerala will become the first in the world to be completely powered by a 12-megawatt (MW) solar power plant.

In addition, the country’s Airport Authority plans to add another 50 MW of solar at various airports, with an ultimate goal of raising that number to 150 MW.

The 12MW solar farm is situated near the freight terminal at Cochin International. (Credit: Cochin International Airport)

According to a press release, Cochin International’s solar power station is expected to save 300,000 tons worth of carbon emissions over the next 25 years. That’s the equivalent of planting 3 million trees or not driving 750 million miles!

The airport’s parent company, Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL), will continue to explore alternate energy resources, as well. Numerous water bodies in Kerala may be taken advantage of through dam-based solar panels and other hydro power projects.

Considering that the Cochin airport is a hub for tourists and locals transiting from around the globe, this move will be a huge platform for showcasing how a greener option is feasible in the industry.

 The new international terminal at the Cochin airport will be operational in May 2016.

What are your thoughts on this news? Share in the comment section below.

Germany Sets New Record Producing 78% Renewable Energy

Germany Sets New Record Producing 78% Renewable Energy

On July 25th, Germany set a new record for renewable energy by meeting 78% of the day’s electricity requirements from renewables, exceeding the previous record of 74% set in May 2014.  This is a huge achievement and proves that renewable energy is the answer to our future energy needs.  According to the federal Energy Information Administration, the U.S. only gets around 10% of its electricity from renewable sources.

We’ve also recently reported that Denmark found itself producing 140% of its national electricity needs from wind turbines. reported:

According to an analysis by German energy expert Craig Morris at the Energiewende blog, a stormy day across northern Europe combined with sunny conditions in southern Germany led to the new record, the exact figures of which are still preliminary. Morris writes that most of Germany’s wind turbines are installed in the north and most of its solar panels are in the south.

If the figures hold, it will turn out that wind and solar generated 40.65 gigawatts (GW) of power on July 25. When this is combined with other forms of renewables, including 4.85 GW from biomass and 2.4 GW from hydropower, the total reaches 47.9 GW of renewable power — occurring at a time when peak power demand was 61.1 GW on Saturday afternoon. To bolster his analysis, Morris points to early figures from Agora Energiewende, a Germany energy policy firm, that have renewables making up 79 percent of domestic power consumption that day.

It was due to an unusual weather pattern that brought heavy winds where most of the nation’s wind turbines are located. As these turbines generated more power, utilities ramped down coal- and gas-fired power plants. This just proves that yet again that renewable energy has the potential to replace our old ways of generating energy rapidly.
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Peru Set to Provide 2 Million Free Solar Panels to Poorest Residents

Peru Set to Provide 2 Million Solar Panels to Poorest residents

The country of Peru aims to provide free electricity to over 2 million of its poorest residents by harnessing the power of the sun. Jorge Merino, the Energy and Mining Minister of Peru, says that the National Photovoltaic Household Electrification Program will provide electricity to poor households through the installation of photovoltaic panels.

As reported by the Latin America Herald Tribune, the first part of the initiative is to provide solar systems to 500,000 extremely poor households in areas that lack even basic access to the power grid. The program will provide a massive opportunity for domestic solar installers, and Merino has said that bidding for the contract will open later this year to fix the rest of the panels.

First started in Contumaza, a province in the northeastern region of Cajamarca, the project has already allowed 1,601 solar panels to be installed. According to the energy minister, when the project is finished, the scheme will allow 95% of Peru to have access to electricity by the end of 2016, whereas at present, only 66% of the country’s population has access. 

Said Merine:

This program is aimed at the poorest people, those who lack access to electric lighting and still use oil lamps, spending their own resources to pay for fuels that harm their health.”

This commendable project certainly makes one ponder the possibilities for more prosperous countries if Peru can accomplish this feat for its people.

Share your comments below.

This article (Peru Will Provide FREE Solar To 2 Million Of Its Poorest Residents) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author and

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Who Controls the Weather? 100 Years Of Patents Revealed

Who Controls the Weather? 100 Year Old Patents Revealed

(NaturalNews) Have the U.S. government and American researchers been toying with the notion of controlling, changing or otherwise adapting the weather? According to this comprehensive and exhaustive list of patents, the answer is yes.

In fact, researchers have spent the past century working to develop climate and weather control technologies. But a 1999 study by the U.S. Air Force nailed it: Within three decades, the report’s authors concluded, the United States military should have perfected methods to control weather.

As reported at the time by WorldNetDaily, the Air Force study titled, “Weather as A Force Multiplier: Owning the Weather In 2025,” which was commissioned by then-Air Force Chief of Staff Michael Ryan and first presented in 1996, authors predicted that the technology was within reach.

As noted by WND:

Military planners have often bemoaned the fact that during critical operations weather has been a mitigating factor. Though the U.S. military is generally considered superior to the forces of other nations and can wage war in most kinds of weather, Air Force operations traditionally have suffered the most from inclement weather like rain, fog, and other low-visibility conditions.

Click here to search for more information about geoengineering.

Weather control as a weapon

The Air Force is the branch of service tasked with most of the military’s satellite and space surveillance; weather conditions can degrade the ability of sensitive surveillance equipment like infrared technology and imagery programs. As such, the Air Force has long sought to defeat natural phenomena because planners believe that without weather-modification capability, critical combat missions in the future would be hampered, to the detriment of U.S. forces.

“Achieving such a highly accurate and reasonably precise weather-modification capability in the next 30 years will require overcoming some challenging but not insurmountable technological and legal hurdles,” the report said.

The authors added that altering weather patterns would eventually become an “integral part of U.S. national security policy with both domestic and international applications.”

“Society will have to provide the resources and legal basis for a mature capability to develop,” they wrote, signaling that the Air Force believes public reluctance and likely legal battles would be hurdles to the development and deployment of a global weather-modification system.

Today, one of the most widely pursued weather modification techniques is called cloud seeding, using in an attempt to cause rain or snow, generally to boost an area’s moisture content.

“Weather modification, commonly known as cloud seeding, is the application of scientific technology that can enhance a cloud’s ability to produce precipitation,” says the web site Weather Modification, Inc., which says the company is able to provide aerial or ground-based cloud seeding.

The company’s current projects listing includes federal and state governments, as well as academic institutes and private corporations (interestingly, the company’s client list does not include the state of California, which is currently experiencing a historic drought).

Then there is HAARP, one of the better-known weather modification projects. Officially called the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program, its aim is not simply weather modification but also electromagnetic warfare, according to Canada-based Center for Research on Globalization.

“It isn’t just conspiracy theorists who are concerned about HAARP. The European Union called the project a global concern and passed a resolution calling for more information on its health and environmental risks. Despite those concerns, officials at HAARP insist the project is nothing more sinister than a radio science research facility,” said a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation documentary, cited by Global Research.

HAARP is a U.S. military program; researchers at the Global Research center believe the technology is part of the Defense Department’s “Joint Vision 2020,” which seeks to achieve “full spectrum dominance” of battle spaces.

A history of covert military weather modification programs

Weather modification for military defense is not a new idea; in fact, the U.S. military attempted to create weather obstructions during the Vietnam War by dropping silver iodide particles in the clouds during the infamous Operation Popeye. describes the operation:

Between 1967 and 1972, the US air force carried out “Operation Popeye“, the first use of weather as an instrument of war. Almost 3,000 flights were sent into the skies above the Ho Chi Minh Trail, where planes seeded clouds with silver iodide particles, causing storms and extendingthe monsoon season. “Popeye” turned the strategic pass into a bog — and appalled the international community. In 1977, the Enmod (Environmental Modification Convention) treaty outlawed weather warfare.

Click here to find articles on about Operation Popeye.

HAARP as ‘full dominance’ weapon

According to a 2000 report by the American Forces Press Service:

Full-spectrum dominance means the ability of U.S. forces, operating alone or with allies, to defeat any adversary and control any situation across the range of military operations.

While full-spectrum dominance is the goal, the way to get there is to “invest in and develop new military capabilities.” The four capabilities at the heart of full-spectrum dominance are dominant maneuver, precision engagement, focused logistics and full-dimensional protection.

Read the full Center for Research on Globalization’s HAARP report here.


Learn more:

10 Healing Foods You Can Grow Anywhere

10 Healing Foods You Can Grow Anywhere

Adidas Teams Up to Make Sneakers from Ocean Waste

Scientists predict that by 2025, the earths coral reef eco-system will be gone. Along with this devastating truth, it is also estimated that in 6-16 years the majority of our sea life will also be gone.

The famous shoe designer Adidas has partnered up with Parley “a collaboration space where creators, thinkers and leaders from art, film, music, fashion, technology and science partner up with major brands and environmentalists to raise awareness and to collaborate on projects that can end the destruction of the magic blue universe beneath us: Our Oceans.”

Cyrill Gutsch, the founder of Parley is an award winning designer, brand and product developer and together they want to do something about it.

imageAccording to Forbes, house cats consume more fish than seals in any given year and marine plants give 70% of the earths oxygen.

“Adidas created a world first with a shoe upper made entirely of yarns and filaments reclaimed and recycled from ocean waste and illegal deep sea gill nets”

The pollution of the oceans is attributed but not limited to chemical, oil, global warming, ocean acidification and over fishing due to hundreds of miles of drift nets.

Now if only more major corporations would  “follow suit.” No pun intended 🙂

Source: to Forbes

5 Countries That Prove the World Doesn’t Need Fossil Fuels

by Jake Anderson,

Guest Writer for Soul Science

A decade ago, the renewable energy movement faced an uphill battle. Today, environmentally-minded nations of the world increasingly embrace alternative energy sources. These countries now lead the way toward a future free of petroleum and dirty energy. In the process, they save significant amounts of money on national energy costs while preserving and protecting the world’s natural resources.

Despite powerful corporate disinformation campaigns meant to convince populations that renewable energy is not a viable way to satisfy the needs of global industry, the following five nations aren’t just subsisting on renewable energy—they are thriving on it.

Costa Rica

Since the start of 2015, Costa Rica has gone 100% green. This move away from fossil fuels will help ensure that lush jungles and pristine beaches remain intact. The comprehensive shift will help Costa Ricans not only save their natural resources, but ensure that the country continues to benefit from its very profitable eco-tourism industry, though they would be wise to be vigilant of the effects of tourism on local ecosystems.

One of Costa Rica’s renewable efforts involves utilizing its own plentiful rainfall to power their growing hydroelectric infrastructure. Incredibly, the small country has the second best electric infrastructure in Latin America. Yet, it has not put all its eggs in one basket—Costa Rica is also generating power from geothermal sources, wind, biomass and solar energy products.


Denmark knows a thing or two about windmills, which have peppered their countryside for decades. In fact, the nation installed its first wind turbines as far back as the 1970s and has not let up in recent years. Denmark is now the leading country in the world for wind power. In the year 2014, Denmark set a world record for windmill production. The country now enjoys around 40% of its total electricity from this one clean energy source, alone.

New studies show that Denmark is well on its way to meeting its self-set goal of being 50% powered by renewable resources by 2020. Not happy with half, Denmark hopes to be 100% renewable by 2050. This would make it one of the first advanced countries in the word to be 100% renewable. It’s an ambitious goal, but Denmark’s recent success proves they are up to the task. Just this month, the nation celebrated a day in which it drew 140% of its electrical power from wind turbines.


2014 was a very good year for Scotland and renewables. In one month of December 2014, Scotland set a personal record in renewable energy. Using wind power alone, Scotland provided almost 1300 MWh (megawatt-hours) to its growing national grid. That’s enough energy to supply almost 4 million homes with electricity.

Scotland is now using wind power to produce and supply almost 100% of the country’s household needs, but it has not stopped there. During the summer months, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Inverness harvested enough solar energy to power 100% or more of the electric demands for the average home.

Scotland has also invested large amounts of money into creating one of the most advanced computer-driven energy infrastructures in the world.


Sweden is joining its Nordic neighbor, Denmark, and doubling down on green with a limited-coal approach that has been so successful the IEA, or International Energy Agency, commended the country for its new energy policies. But Sweden is not content relying on limited coal alone—the country is also developing advanced biomass energy systems. The strategy has been so successful that by 2010, Sweden was already producing more energy from biomass than from fossil fuels. Steps like these are putting Sweden high on the list of green countries.


It seems like Finland is not happy playing second fiddle to its northern neighbors. Wind powered energy is quickly transforming the country’s energy needs. These recent steps have dramatically reduced the country’s greenhouse gas emissions, caused from the burning of fossil fuels.

Finland is not as far along as Sweden and Denmark when it comes to renewable energy, but it is quickly moving in the right direction. By the year 2012,  was already producing enough energy to cover almost 34.3% of the energy needs and by 2020, it hopes to be closer to 40%. With its neighbors leading the way, the future looks bright for Finland.

Source: 5 Countries that Prove the World Doesn’t Need Fossil Fuels

Largest Province in Canada Declares All Animals Sentient

Largest Province in Canada Declares All Animals Sentient

Quebec has been a province known to have the worst track record for animal cruelty, but that all changes today. The bill states that “animals are not things. They are sentient beings and have biological needs.” The proposed legislation will impose heavy fine and jail time for cited serial animal abusers and the bill even goes as far as including one of the smallest beings a goldfish. You can’t just flush your gold fish down a toilet anymore even if you want to.

“We know scientifically that fish are sentient and can feel pain,” Devine said “If animals are capable of suffering then they should be included (in the bill).”

For a lot of us, we already know that animals are sentient, but in Quebec animals currently have the same rights as your couch.  Manitoba, Ontario and British Columbia, have the strongest animal welfare initiatives in the country and Quebec has been inspired to follow suit.

According to the Globe and Mail “The biggest change (in the bill) is that up to now, an animal in Quebec is considered as a movable, like a piece of equipment,” Paradis said. “It goes from that to being a sentient being.”

Paradis believes his bill will transform Quebec from the jurisdiction with some of the least strict animal-welfare rules in North America — it is considered the puppy-mill capital of the continent — to one with some of the toughest.

Paradis also looked to France, which updated its own laws last January to change the status of animals to sentient beings from their prior status of movable property.

The bill has separate rules for pet owners, farmers with livestock, owners of pet shops, or people who sell animal-based products such as furs.

Pet owners “must ensure that the animal’s welfare and safety are not compromised,” meaning domesticated animals have to receive “care that is consistent with (their) biological needs,” the bill states.

Farmers must guarantee that their animals are “treated with dignity as much as possible” from the moment they are born to the day they are slaughtered.

But farm animals don’t get the same protection as pets. They must be treated “in accordance with generally recognized rules,” the bill reads.

That, says the head of animal advocacy for the SPCA in Montreal, means chickens, will still be allowed to be kept in enclosures no wider than a sheet of paper — called battery cages — for their entire lives. “Whatever the (food) industry does on a wide scale is exempt,” said Alanna Devine.“I don’t know if this means they’ll be treated with dignity and respect.” She said the bill is unclear regarding the status of many wild and exotic animals and those found in zoos.”- see more at Globe and Mail

This is just one small step in the right direction. There is still much work to do to ensure that all animals, farmed or “zood” are getting their appropriate needs met, as well as being treated with respect.

Pyramid Garden Grows Food with No Soil and 80% Less Water

Pyramid Garden

Pyramid Garden is a revolutionary invention that grows vegetables, herbs and flowers up to 30% faster with 80% less water and there is no soil  needed. The roots, which are hanging inside the pyramid, are sprayed with nutrient rich water. Excess water drips back into the tray, is filtered and recycled. Leafy vegetables grow on the outside, while root vegetables grow on the inside.

Pyramid GardenCan you imagine how this product would impact third world countries? The toughest challenge in these countries is finding and purchasing proper irrigation pipes to get fresh water to grow food. Because this product uses 80% less water by effectively filtering and recycling it, this would greatly help absolve this problem.

Anyone up for a mission?

Pyramid Garden offers two sizes, a personal pyramid or a commercial pyramid. With just the personal system you can grow up to 40 plants with 5 sqft. This is truly an excellent product, and this isn’t a pitch. I wasn’t paid to write this article, I just find the product really awesome and can see so many potential uses for it!!

Check out this video on how it all works and the successes they have had.

Pyramid Garden:

  • unique grow space increases your grow yield by 2 to 3 times depending what you are growing

  • allows for growing of root vegetables

  • provides angled panels for optimum sun exposure

  • is a true aeroponic system that delivers a nutrients enriched mist to the root hairs of your plants

  • no soil, no soil borne pests or weeding necessary

  • can be placed anywhere there is sunlight

  • includes a touch control cycle timer

  • has a built in filter, jet pump and oxygen pump

  • provides more oxygen to your plants at the root level

  • can be used indoors with grow lights and proper grow environment

  • can be used with a trellis system for vining plants

  • can use any water soluable synthetic, natural, and organic nutrients

  • is made of food grade materials

  • is easy to assemble and transport

  • will last for many years to come for your vegetable, herb, and fruit needs

For More info go to

A special thanks to pyramid garden for allowing us to share their information on our website!