Miaoli 苗栗
Miaoli 苗栗 16138
Miaoli 苗栗 16139
Miaoli 苗栗 16140
approaching Tongluo township 銅鑼鄉
Miaoli 苗栗 16141
a thousand year old camphor in the elementary school yard
Miaoli 苗栗 16142
Camphor tree 樟樹 Cinnamomum camphoraknown as
Miaoli 苗栗 16143
tree hug
Miaoli 苗栗 16145
Miaoli 苗栗 16146
ladybug in the camphor
Miaoli 苗栗 16148
school gate, 10:30 AM
Miaoli 苗栗 16150
Miaoli 苗栗 16151
Following Hsuhua to his farm
Miaoli 苗栗 16153
Miaoli 苗栗 16156
Yarong driving
Miaoli 苗栗 16157
Miaoli 苗栗 16161
Tammy in Hsuhua's shelter, 11AM
Miaoli 苗栗 16164
Hsuhua presents his plan
Miaoli 苗栗 16166
Miaoli 苗栗 16167
composting toilet
Miaoli 苗栗 16168
Miaoli 苗栗 16169
green persimmon
Miaoli 苗栗 16170
Miaoli 苗栗 16171
Gourian Clematis 串鼻龍 Clematis gouriana
Miaoli 苗栗 16174
local earth god temple
Miaoli 苗栗 16175
betel nut
Miaoli 苗栗 16176
Miaoli 苗栗 16177
web covered plant
Miaoli 苗栗 16178
Miaoli 苗栗 16179
butterfly on elder
Miaoli 苗栗 16180
Miaoli 苗栗 16184
flies on elder
Miaoli 苗栗 16185
Miaoli 苗栗 16186
Taiwan Lily 台灣百合 Lilium formosanum
Miaoli 苗栗 16188
aiyu 愛玉子 Ficus pumila L. var. awkeotsang (Makino)
Miaoli 苗栗 16189
Miaoli 苗栗 16190
dew on web
Miaoli 苗栗 16192
Short-legged Japalure 短肢攀蜥 Japalura brevipes
Miaoli 苗栗 16196
Short-legged Japalure
Miaoli 苗栗 16197
view out from shelter
Miaoli 苗栗 16200
Miaoli 苗栗 16202
Miaoli 苗栗 16204
Hsuhua's dog
Miaoli 苗栗 16205
driveway test as we leave, 2:15 PM
Miaoli 苗栗 16208
Miaoli 苗栗 16211
Miaoli 苗栗 16213
Miaoli 苗栗 16215
second student's plot, 3:20 PM
Miaoli 苗栗 16216
Daiwen picking guava
Miaoli 苗栗 16217
Miaoli 苗栗 16218
the farmers
Miaoli 苗栗 16219
Miaoli 苗栗 16220
view of the L shaped plot
Miaoli 苗栗 16221
the tung trees have been removed from the forest, the ground is now overrun with heartleaf hempvine 蔓澤蘭 Mikania cordata
Miaoli 苗栗 16223
Miaoli 苗栗 16224
diesel buffalo
Miaoli 苗栗 16226
Miaoli 苗栗 16229
Miaoli 苗栗 16230
the farmers' family home
Miaoli 苗栗 16231
Peter eating dragon fruit (pitaya) 火龍果 Hylocereus
Miaoli 苗栗 16232
Miaoli 苗栗 16238
the farmer's homestead
Miaoli 苗栗 16239
leave at 5:30, we drive back to Taipei in heavy rain

We travel to Miaoli County 苗栗縣 in western Taiwan to visit the projects of two graduates of the PDC course. Arriving in Tongluo Township 銅鑼鄉, we leave the highway to visit an ancient camphor tree in an elementary school yard. Tongluo Township is one of Miaoli's eleven townships. It is a rural area with a population of 20 thousand people in an area of 75 square kilometers. From the school, we still have a good drive through the charateristic rolling hills of Miaoli before we arrive at Hsuhua's farm.

Hsuhua explains that his land holding is 3 jia 甲 and 6 fen 分. A ping 坪 is the space occupied by two tatami mats or 3.3058 square metres. A fen 分 is 970 square meters or 293.4 ping 坪. There are 10 fen 分 in a jia 甲, or 2934 ping 坪. An hectare 公頃 is 10,000 square metres or 107,639 sq ft or 1.031034 jia 甲 (very close). There are 100 hectars 公頃 in a square kilometer 平方公里 of land. There are 640 acres in a square mile of land. So Hsuhua's land holding is simply (very close to) 3.6 ha (hectares), or 8.9 acres, or 387,500 square feet.

The name Miaoli originates from a combination of two Hakka words, cat (貓) and raccoon dog (狸), which phonetically approximate Pali (Bari), a community of Taokas. The Taokas (道卡斯族) includes a number of indigenous ethno-linguistic groups which inhabited the plains of western Taiwan. The Taokas lived in a region including modern Hsinchu, Taichung and Miaoli counties.

At the second site we visited, the heartleaf hempvine 蔓澤蘭 (Mikania cordata) had managed to almost fully invade a recently cleared area in the forest. The word in conservation circles is that it was the Council of Agricultural Affairs that originally introduced this now very serious weed for soil erosion control purposes. Pictures of the plant, the story of its arrival and spread, as well as means of control. The moral of this story is: Know your plants and their behaviors!

Gourian Clematis 串鼻龍 Clematis gouriana is also known in Chinese as: 台灣鐵線蓮、鐵線蓮、梨山小簑衣藤、綴鼻草、威靈仙、威玲仙 Its uses include: 1. 園藝庭植用:庭植為綠廊植物或搭架使攀援成綠牆。 2. 替代繩索用:蔓莖常供綑束薪材。 3. 藥用:藤莖:微苦、溫。效用:藤莖:行氣活血,祛風濕,止痛。治跌打損傷,瘀滯疼痛,風濕骨痛;根:搗爛敷創傷和治毒蛇咬傷。鮮莖葉具發泡作用,用治皮膚病。

Keywords: flower, fruit, plant, reptile
People: Philip , Tammy