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Claudette Fleming 's Profile
Claudette Fleming
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London, G.B, United Kingdom
Climate Zone:
Wet Tropical

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No longer at Eco Centro Soneva Fushi Victoria Natural Reserve
Bronwyn White Eduard von Lindheim Evelyn Bishop Helder Valente Richard Larson
Bronwyn White Camille Messer Eduard von Lindheim Evelyn Bishop Geoff Lawton Helder Valente Joana Reinhardt Paul Tan Ras Binghi Iword (Eddie) Nicholls Richard Larson

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Forest Farming with Nature

Posted by Claudette Fleming over 10 years ago

Farming has been done by indigenous peoples for centuries. Planting by the elements and animals are valued as part of the food system too. In traditional communities, once the land can produce, there is food and people do not starve.

The majority of today’s traditional indigenous farmers are located far distances away from modern aids to farming. Small scale farming still takes nature into consideration, and contributes to the production of organic food today.

Many indigenous farmers still practise customary techniques. We work with what we have. Part of keeping the land is ensuring it has its own way. Advice from experts who have years of experimentation is valuable.

Fortunately for us, we can rely on the expertise of one indigenous farmer who has been at it for many years.  Apart from eliminating the cost and difficulty of getting ‘outside’ help, we are preserving skills that are valuable even today.

Even though we do not produce a vast amount of food, still our holistic approach gives us many unique and rare foods. This makes our plant-food supply system very distinct. Our local expert is able to donate and sell excess to locals as well as further afield. Meanwhile, visitors and animals benefit from the forest fruit trees we have saved.


Terrain ranges from a hilltop unto a low swamp with a small creek.

Soil Types

Soils vary from white sand to Pegasse, a type of tropical peat.

Plants and Trees

In the white sand, we save and allow different plants and trees to grow - traditional forest fruit trees, as well as medicinal ones. In addition, we farm plants that grow well in the soil. These include cashew, pineapple and cassava. The soil changes away from the hillside towards the swamp. We have planted yam and are experimenting with other crops as well.

There is local spinach and we have our first white potato (Irish Potato). This is an experiment by our expert. Hopefully, he would be successful in this venture.


Even though we have enough land, our approach is multi-tiered. With our mixed cropping, our main pest remains the Acoushi (leaf cutter) ant. We avoid using pesticides so are experimenting with food plants these pets do not find attractive e.g. bitter gourd. We are also experimenting with companion planting.

The Future

For us, these times are exciting and we look forward to the future with great optimism.  




Cassava farm at moraro Spinach Cashew at moraro

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