The Mayan Food Forest: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Sustainable Food Systems

UCSB archeologist Dr. Annabel Ford will share exciting new research on how traditional food forestry offers important clues for building sustainable modern supply systems.

When: Saturday, July 17, 2010, 10 a.m. to noon

Where: SBCC, 721 Cliff Dr., Santa Barbara

Cost: Not available

Age limit: All ages

Categories: Lectures


The California Rare Fruit Growers presents renowned UCSB archeologist Dr. Annabel Ford will share exciting new research and understandings of how traditional Mayan food forestry offers important clues and inspiration for building truly sustainable modern food supply systems. "We often think of the rainforest as untouched by humans, or 'virgin forest,'" she says."In reality, it can be understood as the garden of the ancient Maya: the product of millennia of management by forest gardeners who cultivated the cycle of milpa, forest garden, and forest. In fact, 90% of plants in the forest are useful to humans, indicating considerable human influence. The Maya Forest remains the second most biodiverse place in the world (the Amazon forest is the first). The legacy of the ancient Maya forest gardeners is continued by the Maya farmers of the El Pilar Forest Garden Network."

The Maya were and are master agriculturalists whose exquisitely-designed Food Forests can teach all of us about sustainable agriculture. Dr. Ford works with the modern Maya at El Pilar and has also excavated at the site. She has established that the Mayans have been engaged in food forestry for at least 8,000 years.

Phone: 805-451-4168

Event posted July 6, 2010
Last updated July 6, 2010


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