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Here are the most walnuts in the world – jj
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Here are the most walnuts in the world

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BBC

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In western Kyrgyzstan, 70 km from the border of Uzbekistan, one named Arslanbob Town is.

This town with a population of thirteen thousand is situated in a fertile valley among the hills of Babash Ata.

Two natural waterfalls in spring and summer tempt the tourists here, but the most unique thing here is in the autumn. It is a walnut here.

There is a large-scale migration from Arslanbob in September every year.

About 3000 families leave their homes here and move towards the southern slopes of the mountain spread over 385 square kilometers.

Located in the forest about an hour's walk away from the village, the world's most walnut is grown.

BBC

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The walnut forest in Arslanbob produces one thousand to fifteen hundred tons of walnuts every year, which is the largest single source of walnuts in the world.

Walnuts here are dark colored. Also, they are famous for their taste and being in an environment free from pests. This nut is sent to Europe and all over Asia.

How did such a big forest of walnuts come here? It is part of the legends.

According to some people, this story is related to Prophet Mohammad Saheb, who gave walnut seeds to a gardener and asked him to go to the forest.

After long journey he reached Arslanbob. In the foothills of the snow-clad mountain peaks, he found a place where the weather was very pleasant.

There were rivers of clear water and the land was fertile. Seeing the right place, he planted the seeds. After centuries, walnut forests were prepared there.

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Alexander the Great

Another legend is that most of the walnut trees in Europe have been from the forests of Arslanbob.

Two thousand years ago Alexander the Great spread them.

According to this story, when Alexander's army was marching towards East Asia, it stopped in this valley.

Some soldiers could not go forward due to the wounds received in the war. They stopped a few kilometers from Arslanbob. This place is now called Yardar. Yardar literally means wounded in Uzbek language.

A few months later, those soldiers got fit and joined Alexander's army again.

The soldiers found walnuts, apples and other fruits in abundance in the forest. He immediately recovered after eating them and reached his commander.

Alexander was so happy that during his return to Europe he took walnut seeds from Arslanbob and got them planted in Greece.

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<h2 class=Start of harvest

According to the crop cycle, the nut crop is ready in the beginning of October. But Arslanbob's family starts moving towards the mountain forest from mid-September.

They also take their cattle along. These people walk and collect walnuts from local trees. Up to 20 kilos of walnuts come in their bags.

According to local law, the forest land is the property of the forest department, but Arslanbob's families rent several hectares of land.

For two months, these families live in camps here and work in the fields.

Before the harvest is ready, they offer a sacrifice to a chicken or a small animal so that the person above is happy.

There are many walnut trees here which are centuries old. According to agricultural scientists, these walnut trees can live up to a thousand years and their stem diameter can be up to 2 meters.

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<h2 class=Tree climbers

The way of taking nut crops can be quite dangerous. Without a rope or any security arrangement, the head of the family or another male member climbs the tree.

Ascending, they reach the topmost branch. Going upstairs, they shake the branches loudly, causing the walnuts to break and fall down, and women and children pick them and gather them.

Not all families have tree climbers, so they seek professional help.

These professionals charge a nominal fee but the risk in their work is very high.

According to the local forest department, at least one person dies every year after falling from a walnut tree.

BBC

Nut pickers

All the family members work during the harvest. Very young children stay in the village with grandparents from Monday to Friday to go to school.

On weekends, their parents come to the village and take the children with them on the horse and take them to the forest.

Children contribute a great deal in nut deposits. They are very helpful in choosing the walnuts that fall between the leaves.

According to local community tourism organization co-ordinator Khayatila Tarikov, children accumulate more walnuts than their parents.

If the crop is good, the family renting 3 hectares of land can collect 300 kg of walnuts.

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<h2 class=Life in the forest

Arslanbob's love Temirova loves walnut season. In the autumn, they get the opportunity to live in the forest.

Every morning after extracting the milk of the cow, she boils it. Then under the chestnut tree, sit down to eat breakfast of home made bread, fruits and fresh cream.

Although walnut is the main reason for coming to the forest, but most families also cultivate potatoes.

They pluck the apples and leave the cattle open to graze fresh grass before the winter season begins.

All the families cook on a wooden stove. They eat milk-curd and drink tea along with the pear, pishta, apple, almond and walnut found in the forest.

Before morning tea, the whole family goes to pick the walnuts that have fallen in the night. The rest of the morning is spent working in potato fields.

In the afternoon, go out to relax or listen to stories. The whole family then goes to pick walnuts before the sun sets. People go to sleep early after having dinner.

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<h2 class=Nut exchange

In walnut season, shopkeepers take walnuts instead of money. Nut farmers buy food and household items in exchange for crops.

Children buy chocolates, cakes and ice cream for them.

There are 11 types of walnuts available in Arslanbob. The larger the grain is, the better the price.

Peeled walnuts are costlier than peeled walnuts. In local markets, it can cost 500 mon ($ 7.16).

Many customers buy walnuts in bulk and export them to places like Turkey, Russia, China and Europe. The cost of reaching foreign customers can be up to three times.

Farmer families also keep walnuts for themselves. They make nut-milk from it or prepare Zanussak, a traditional Kyrgyz dessert with butter and honey.

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Conservation efforts

Due to the efforts of the people of Arslanbob as well as the Forest Department, walnut forests have survived for centuries.

When a family takes a land lease here, its duration can be up to 49 years.

People give their best walnut seeds to the forest department, which plants them in their nursery and in the forest, so that new trees can be prepared.

To cut dry branches, permission of local ranger is also required. Trees are fined for cutting trees without permission.

But the future of these walnut trees is uncertain. Due to climate change, unseasonal rain, snowfall and cattle grazing, soil harvesting has decreased in the last several years.

In search of employment, youth are going to cities, due to which the number of nut farmers is also decreasing.

The local government has enacted laws for environmental protection and in collaboration with the United Nations, scientists are now running educational workshops in which people are told that leaving some walnuts will save the forests for a long time.

BBC

Community party

After the two months of the harvest is over, all families have a tradition of having a feast in which neighbors are invited.

Depending on how good the crop has been, again hens or sheep are sacrificed.

The feast includes salads, fruits, bread, tea, sweets, yogurt and fresh cream along with traditional casserole and lamb meat.

After the banquet, guests pray that next year there should be a better crop.

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