A 25′ x 24′ Greenhouse
Seedlings in the spring, vegetables in the summer and fall, a bright and warm classroom in the winter, the greenhouse project has been a great success! They have already asked for help building a second one.
A shortage of arable land and a harsh climate makes it impossible for Saldang to produce a sufficient quantity and diversity of food throughout the year. This makes the greenhouse a tremendous asset to both the school and the village. It provides better food security by extending the growing season and improving the quality of fresh vegetables for the student lunches and staff meals.
There has been a bonus all season use for this greenhouse. In winter, a monk from the monastery holds classes for students to learn about their Tibetan history and culture. The greenhouse is providing them with a warm and bright classroom on sunny winter days!
Unfortunately, greenhouses are prohibitively expensive in this mostly treeless land. The wood for the greenhouse was cut from the forest near Lake Phoksundo and had to be transported by mule, which took three days. It was the primary cost of the greenhouse.
(There is no aquatic life in Phoksumdo Lake, which helps to make the waters a brilliant clear turquoise. It is 4.8km long, 1.8km wide and said to be 650m deep, an astonishing spectacle in such an arid landscape. According to legend, the lake was formed by a spiteful female demon who flooded a village after they revealed her whereabouts to the saint Padmasambhava. It is said you can see the remains of a village below the lake’s surface.)