When thinking about the Algarve and its landscape, it is normal for mental images of palm trees and golf courses to occur. The Algarve landscape has been invaded by a landscape model, the so-called “tropical paradises”, which proliferated through the tourism industry. It was from here that the study “Sustainable Beauty for Algarvean Gardens: Old Knowledge to a Better Future” started, defining as a problem the lack of sustainability of the Algarve landscape dominated by lawns with palm trees that deplete the region's water resources.
Ana Duarte Rodrigues, researcher at the Department of History and Philosophy of Sciences and the Interuniversity Center for the History of Sciences and Technology, is the coordinator of this project, started in 2015 and financed by the Foundation for Science and Technology, under the Researcher Program FCT, worth 50 thousand euros.
“In the early modern age, farms were self-sustainable and the technology that exists today, such as automatic irrigation systems, was unknown. (…) Water-wise management involves an intelligent choice of species, which must naturally come from those that have prevailed in the region for centuries-long"
Ana Duarte Rodrigues