There was a piece of property right next to the village where all the kids would walk through to go to school that was particularly bad. Trash everywhere, just mounded knee high in some places. The kids would walk through this area every morning going to school, weaving through trash piles, covering their nose from the smell of rotting trash and human poop.
This area was completely unused except by the children to play in. The owner of that property lived in another part of the island and never came to see the property or take care of it. The thing is, is that this property had the best soil of anywhere in the area. Most of the village was solid stone.
It took me a little while to track down the owner of the property but when I finally found her and told her that it was my intention to clear the trash and plant corn she was very happy. We were also seeking permission to dig up some of the dirt and use it to build gardens in other areas throughout the village where normally gardening would be impossible because of lack of soil. The deal we made was that if we cleared the garbage that we could plant corn in the cleared areas and also build a brick burn pit at the edge of the property in order to keep the trash levels in check after the initial cleaning. On the edge of the property there was an old pig pen that people had been using to dump trash. I had also been seeking permission to turn this into a compost toilet for the kids as they are walking to school, but the owner was not okay with this. But we did get permission to take as much dirt as we would like which was the main reason for doing anything at all on this property.
The first step was to clear all the trash and weeds, but we needed a way to keep the trash from coming back, so we built this burn pit and went around to all the villagers and taught them what to burn and what not to burn. We also implemented a small scale recycling system for glass and metal.
Next step was planting Corn!
After the entire area was clear of trash and weeds we went through and tilled the soil a bit with the hand tools.
the bamboo was marking fruit trees, but sadly those were unproductive. the corn and squash did great though.
One of the burn pits right next to the corn field.
We got lots of corn!