The Maya inhabited the the
Sartenejan Region at least from the Late Postclassic (250 AD) to the Terminal
Classic (1000 AD) period.
The scattered distribution of Mayan ruins
throughout the region, the lack of large ceramonial buidlings, and few and weak aggregations
of structures, strongly suggests a basically dispersed rural community. This community would
depend on the Mayan Port of Sarteneja for supplies and to market thier agricultural surplus
or other commodities.
This Mayan rural community were the first permaculture
farmers of the Sartenejan Region. They faced many challenges but prospered for over 750
years. However, thier range of crops was limited both in
types and varieties. see Mayan
To economically flourish in the Sartenejan Region
permaculture must supply high quality produce at a profitable market value to reliable
and perhaps specialist markets.
flourish in the Sartenejan Region permaculture must accomodate a
shallow soil profile over limestone bedrock, and a distinct wet and dry
season. The soil is
generally low in organic matter, dries quickly and to depth under sunshine, and
is low in nutrients. The heavy rainfall during the wet season tends to leach nutrients from
soil, and particularly soil with low organic matter, and to compact unmulched
A dry season that may extend up to 100 days without any
significant rainfall in the Sartenejan Region. However, the water table is generally from 5 to 20 feet below the surface,
and cracks and caves through the limestone enable more mature tree roots to find
Nevertheless, there is
considerable potential for the growing of a wide variety of crops, and crops of higher
quality through the use of permaculture techniques.
excellent production permaculture also need to accomodate several
1) Artisinal agriculture for extended
2) Through extending the
period over which fruit varieties are available,
and the size and quality of fruit, by the use of grafted trees.
3) An increased range
of vegetable types and varieties, with less
dependence on rainfall, fertiliser, or pesticides.
Sustainability for Sarteneja is working toward the
use of permaculture to produce more varieties and better quality fruit, vegetables, herbs and
spices, and medicinal plants.
Fruit production is highly seasonal as there is a
paucity of grafted varieties to extend the harvest season. We are developing the
training and techniques to enable in ground grafting of fruit trees.
On B'alam Ja Way and surrounding properties, we
are planting grafted varieties of fruit trees to test cultivation methods and to
provide grafting stock.
Vegetable production is limited in the Sartenejan
region. Improved vegetable production would serve the need for a healthier local diet,
with the market including both in Sartenaja and in regional tourist resorts and towns.
On Balam Ja Way, and with our collaborators, we
are testing growing conditions and production with different types and varieties
SfS is working to
increase vegetable production with no or little pesticide or fertiliser
1) Growing a
profitable yam organically, or with the minimal use of
fertilisers and pesticides.
2) The use of aquaculture water to sustainably
grow vegetables through increased nutrient recycling.
3) The production of regional
herbs, spices, vegetables, and fruit.
There are many local varieties of herbs and spices in the
Sartenejan region, and many varieties of exotic herbs and spices, available for local
production. Herbs are amenable for small scale production and offer the
potential to improve local cuisine, and for marketing both in Sartenaja and on local tourist
There are many local varieties of medicinal plants in the Sartenejan region. These could be
harvested for health products including beverages for sale in the larger towns.