Eden Foundation

Eden Foundation

Founded 1985 in Sweden
Active in Tanout, Niger, since 1987

The field station

Eden's field station (situated amidst our villages in Tanout), is where we do research on trees and bushes that can grow naturally in this dry area and give food.

In order to be on the Eden research-list, a species must be edible, perennial and be able to grow without irrigation or other artificial support.

Before it is made available to the farmers, it must survive several seasons at the field station under the same conditions as the farmers' fields where the average rainfall is 200 mm/year.

Eden has found several species that can grow in this arid area and give food, even in times of need.


When the field station was set up in Dalli, Tanout, the farmers were employing slash-and-burn practices to clear their fields of trees and bushes in order to get rid of crop-eating birds. Loss of vegetation however was not solving the farmers' problems of lack of food, as the millet was destroyed by strong winds and heavy erosion instead and produced an even lower yield.

The Eden field station in 1988

The change of attitude came when the farmers around the field station saw the impact the Eden perennials had on the environment and their annuals crops.

In 1992, the farmer east of the field station, whose millet was shielded from the wind by the trees of the field station, reported a harvest of 130 baskets. This was more than his granary had room for, and he had to build two more.

The farmer to the west of the station harvested only 40 baskets, because his field was unprotected from the wind and much of his millet had been destroyed.

This spurred the farmers to order seeds from Eden in order to revegetate their environment, and today, many of their Eden trees are producing valuable fruits.

For more information, read about the results.

Millet protected by the trees of the field station (1992)

Unprotected millet (1992)

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and help us give the people of Niger
a sustainable life.

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