* Arbor Eden Synonyms: promised land, heaven, region, nirvana, part, Shangri-la, paradise.
Curt and Paco began working together after Curt bought a property from Paco in the mid- 1990s. During the ensuing years they acquired several large fincas or farms that were in various stages of deforestation. They planted 20+ species of native trees on the heavily eroded soils, eventually planting a total of 20,000 trees. Given the abundant sunlight and rain and rich soils, the area is once again a healthy forest. Many of the trees today soar into the sky providing homes for birds and other wildlife. So too, the streams that once dried up during the dry season run year around.
The idea for the community started to evolve almost 20 years ago when Curt began to study the work of Bill Mollison who created the design process known as permaculture. Permaculture design has many definitions, and we have provided a number of links that we highly recommend that you check out. One of the most important aspects is that it tends to be costly and work-intensive at the beginning of the process but later nature takes over and it becomes a relatively easy way to harvest huge amounts of organic fresh produce.
Recently a saw mill was purchased and the forests are being thinned so that the remaining trees will have room to continue to grow. The cut trees provide timber for chicken coops, barns, food storage, homes and more.
Currently Curt is designing his home on the shore of the five acre lake that is the center of the community. The house will sit on large steel beams and jut over the water. The rest of the structure will be constructed with wood cut on site as well as bamboo and river rock. Hot water is provided by off-site composting of sawdust and chicken manure. A small hydroelectric facility will generate sufficient energy for all electrical needs. Other homes in the area will use a combination of solar and hydro power.
During the past year we have been busy acquiring tree seedlings from greenhouses, private collections and our own plantations. The variety of fruits, nuts and palms for oil come from all over the tropics and will provide each quinta an abundance of foods. That which is not consumed directly can be stored or sold to the rapidly expanding market in San Jose metro area with a population of 2.2 million inhabitants.