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The Paradox of Conservation

The paradox of conservation in the current epoch is that we endeavor to preserve systems that are perpetually variable. Part of our research field is located within a nature reserve that is overseen by the Israel National Parks Authority. One unexpected finding is that the attempted conservation of this natural habitat is in fact harming the cultivars that exist there. This is because legacy horticulture was initially designed to be integral with human society and not apart from it. When provided regular human care, grapevines may grow for several centuries and beyond. Yet, when left unattended, the wild bushes and other plants that share their environment are competing with the grapes and other fruit trees for sunlight and soil. With no outside intervention, these plants are slowly overtaking the once domesticated species.

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