Sierra Nevada

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The project MEMOLA collaborates in cleaning the traditional irrigation systems in High Mountain with the irrigator communities of Lugros and Guadix.

A local group of farmes from Cáñar creates an organic farming association. called ECOCáñar


Growers from Cáñar visit plots of organic production together with ecological production associations’ partners as Ecovalle and Ortigas.


Plants play a significant role in the human history. One o the cradles of Civilization took place in the wild geographic range of wild ancestor of Mediterranean Cultivated Plants. Domestication of plants was the prior condition to the rise of human civilization and its demographic growth. Moreover, human history has gravitated to the possession of certain plant products, so many times the plants and their products can be considered as one of the fundamental reasons of development and relationship between populations. 


60 volunteers and the Local Irrigators Community clean Barjas medieval irrigation channel. Its maintenance is crucial to reactivate the agrarian production.

Local development

The socioeconomic impact is a priority in project actions. We believe in the social utility of our research and we have a responsibility as scientists. Cultural landscapes are the result of a coevolutionary process and, in the case of mountain areas, have shown enormous resilience and efficiency throughout history. However, at present, many of these systems are in the process of abandonment and marginalized in a highly economic context.



MEMOLA partners’ participate in numerous conferences organized by project members as well as other scientific meetings of local or international level. Given the interdisciplinary nature of the project, interventions cover areas such as history and archeology, agronomy, soil science, botany, anthropology, heritage protection, citizen participation, education, land use planning and natural resources management.



Since antiquity, agriculture has had a significant impact on ecosystems in the Mediterranean basin, where water and soil resources are limited. Thus, to understand the current cultural landscapes, resulting from the sustainable interactions between people and nature, it is necessary to investigate the historical use and management of these resources.



Water management has been a crucial issue in the development of Mediterranean mountains landscapes. Traditional irrigation systems, such as small ditches, have made possible the development of different human activities and natural resources bound to their evolution.


This exhibit was held in the town square of Cáñar, organised by the MEMOLA project in collaboration with the Biodiversity Foundation of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment. The themes were the traditional activities, mountainous landscapes and the recovery of the traditional irrigation systems of Barjas. View the gallery