Center for Sustainable Agriculture

The Center for Sustainable Agriculture (CSA), directed by Dr. Elaine Solowey, is a vital player in the field of desert agriculture and sustainable agriculture in the Middle East and the world. The Center is dedicated to the investigation and preservation of arid lands and their natural resources, and works collaboratively with leading institutions including Ben-Gurion University, Jacob Blaustein Institute for Desert Research at Sde Boqer, and the Department of Applied Research.

Dr. Solowey’s research in the Experimental Orchards, which she founded in 1975, is the foundation for important new applications in botanical medicine, renewable energy, and sustainable agriculture. Her work covers a wide range of subjects including the study of endangered medicinal herbs, the search for crops that can be grown in arid and saline soil, and the investigation into raising plants on marginal lands suitable for the production of ethanol for bio-fuel.

Research Projects include:

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    Middle East Medicinal Plants (MEMP)

    Dr. Solowey’s Middle East Medicinal Plant Project (MEMP), which is sponsored by the Louis L. Borick Natural Medicine Research Center of Hadassah Hospital, aims to protect and propagate the rare medicinal and biblical plants of the Southern Negev and Dead Sea area. MEMP has informed innovative pharmaceutical

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    Methuselah

    Methuselah is a date palm that Dr. Elaine Solowey sprouted from a 2,000 date seed. This seed, among others, was found during the excavations of Masada in the mid 1960’s. In 2005, several of these seeds were obtained by the Louis L. Borick Natural Medicine

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  • Varietal arganias from Israel

    Developing a Commercial Crop

    After 35 + years of work, two of Dr. Solowey’s longest standing projects with the Argania Spinosa tree and the Marula tree, have finally come to fruition. Argania Spinosa is a tree that the center has been domesticating for almost 40 years by selection and

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    Experimental Orchards

    In 1975, Dr. Solowey established the Experimental Orchards. The orchards are the foundation for important new applications in botanical medicine, renewable energy, and sustainable agriculture. Her work covers a wide range of subjects including the study of endangered medicinal herbs, the search for crops that can be

    Read More >