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An item in Ningbo becomes important agricultural cultural heritage

It is learned from Haishu District Bureau of Agriculture and Rural Affairs that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs released the 5th list of “important agricultural cultural heritage items”. The “grass-rice rotation system” of Gulin (also known as Huanggulin) Town was included in the list, becoming the first in Ningbo to be included.

The important agricultural cultural heritage items are the typical representatives of China’s excellent farming culture, as well as the wisdom of the long-term production and life practice of the working people of all ethnic groups in China, bearing the genetic code of the Chinese civilization and showing the ideological wisdom and spiritual pursuit of the Chinese nation. 

There have been 91 important agricultural cultural heritage items in the first four lists, and for this fifth list, there are 27 items, including four in Zhejiang Province, namely the Gulin “grass-rice” rotation system, the bamboo cultural system of Anji, the pillar-building cultivation system of honey oranges of Huangyan, and the system of fish-raising in running spring water of Kaihua.

The “grass-rice” rotation system of Gulin Town has a long history. The agricultural proverb of “grass for a year and rice for another year” reflects this long-time practice.

The “grass-rice” rotation mode refers to the practice of “growing grass for one season and late rice for the following season”. Every year from the end of June to the beginning of July, people will sow late rice in the grass fields after harvesting, and from late October to early November, the late rice will be harvested and the new season of grass will be planted. Only in the Gulin Town, the annual “grass-rice” rotation area is nearly ten thousand mu.

“The planting of the grass can improve the soil quality, complementing the nutrients needed for rice cultivation. Generally speaking, the rotation mode will yield 100kg more rice per mu than the conventional consecutive late rice planting mode, and there is also comparably less risk. The rotation of grass and rice not only contains the idea of natural agricultural law and the concept of ecological value, but also fully embodies the intelligence and creative ability of the ancient Gulin people, which is the crystallization of folk wisdom.” said a person in charge from the Industrial Office of Haishu District Bureau of Agricultural and Rural Affairs.

In 2014, the rotation system started to apply for the agricultural cultural heritage item. And after six years’ efforts, it managed to be included in the list. It means that this long standing cultural heritage of Ningbo has taken another step towards the list of the “important global agricultural cultural heritage items”. Haishu District is determined to be inscribed in the global list after three to five years’ efforts

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