“No Life Zone” thrives with fruits and vegetables

Today, when one visits the modern farming and herding industry park inside Gar County, Ngari prefecture, Tibet, one can see tomatoes, napa cabbage, peppers, grapes, goji berries, eggplants, and more growing robustly.

However, before 2014, it was impossible to have fruits and vegetables grown in the region.

The fruits and vegetables inside the modern farming and herding industry park inside Gar County.

The fruits and vegetables inside the modern farming and herding industry park inside Gar County.

“In the past, our fruits and vegetables all had to be shipped in from Xinjiang and Lhasa.” Said an employee of the Farming and Herding Bureau of Gar County. Due to the transportation cost, the price of fruits and vegetables was very high.  

Starting in 2014, Gar County launched the “Vegetable Basket Program,” investing over 96 million yuan in building the modern farming and herding industry park of Gar County, which has vegetable cultivation areas, livestock breeding areas, and orchards.

The industry park has an area of 730 mu(about 49 hectares), with 161 daylight greenhouses spanning 75 thousand sqm, 60 five-tiered tents over 36.7 thousand sqm, two smart greenhouses over 4,256 sqm, and five livestock areas over 6,600 sqm. There’s 300 mu(about 20 hectares) of goji berries, 100 mu(about 6.7 hectares) of tree seedlings, and over 40 varieties of vegetables, fruits and melons, edible mushrooms, flowers, and plants.

With years of development, the total output of fruits and vegetables in Gar County has reached 640 tons in 2017. During Summer and Autumn, vegetable supply reached over 60%, and lowered their prices by more than half since 2013.

The 40 kg pumpkin from the industry park.

Vegetables grown without soil from the industry park.

“Even though winters in Ngari are very cold, we can still grow radish, napa cabbage, Shanghai bok choy, and lotus,” said Liu Jiang. 

“The park has attracted a lot of farmers and herders to work here,” said Liu. They can earn 200 yuan/day at the park and the park has provided 200 jobs during the harvest season.

The flowers and plants tent in the industry park.

Pubu, a resident who has relocated from Geji County to the Kangle housing area across from the industry park, works in weeding and fertilizing at the industry park. He said, “I’ve worked for more than six months here. I believe that as long I work hard, life will get better!”