Over ten years ago on the barren mountain in Horinger, there was a lonely “apricot tree with a hundred years’ history”. That year, Mr. Niu Gensheng was facing such a barren mountain “with no bird in the sky, no grass on the ground and no treasure under the ground”. It was this old apricot tree that gave him the confidence and courage to promote the project of “ecological restoration and protection”. In such severe natural environment, even an apricot tree no one cares about can grow freely and stand erect for one hundred year; in that way, so long as we use scientific method and invest sufficient passion to love the land, we certainly can revitalize it.
Today after ten years, the old apricot tree is no longer alone and the 40,000 mu of barren mountain have turned into green land. Animals like fox, hare, badger and roe deer, birds like Tadorna Ferruginea, Eurasian Spoonbill and Amur Falcon, and herbaceous plant like Astragalus Melilotoides, Glycyrrhiza Squamulosa and Caragana Korshinskii have all appeared again and the biodiversity here has reached over 80 species. Look at these species in arid and semi-arid region, how many of them can you recognize?
Fabaceae; Astragalus Linn; Latin name: Astragalus melilotoides; perennial herb.
Grow on sunny slopes, roadside grassland or meadow grassland. There are pinnately compound leaves with 5-7 leaflets; the leaf stalk and rachis are approximately of equal length. The inflorescence is receme with polymerous and sparse flowers. The pods are wide in obovate round shape or oval shape. The tip is slightly concave with short jaws.
Leguminosae; Glycyrrhiza; Latin name: Glycyrrhiza squamulosa; perennial herb.
Grow on riverbank terrace, roadside, wasteland, or saline-alkali soil. The stipules are in lanceolate shape with 9-13 oblong or oblong obovate leaflets. The inflorescence is axillary-racemes with polymerous. The peduncle is longer than the leaves. The pods are semi-round or round kidney shape with raised back and flat surface. The top is small, short and sharp and turns brown when matured.
Leguminosae; Caragana; Latin name: Caragana korshinskii; shrub.
Grow in semi-fixed and fixed sand. There are pinnately compound leaves with 6-8 pairs of leaflets; the stipules harden into persistent acupunctures at long branches. The pedicels are 6-15 mm with densely pubescence. The pods are flat and lanceolate.
Leguminosae; Oxytropis; Latin name: Oxytropis hirta; perennial herb.
Grow along hill road, on hilly sloping land, hillside meadow, sand covered slope, sunny slope of stone mountain and under open forest. There are pinnately compound leaves with membranous stipules, stiff, lanceolate diamond shape. Multiple flowers form thick and long spike-shape raceme. The corolla is bluish violet, amaranth or yellowish white. The pods are in long egg shape.
**Some of the photos are from the internet and only used for popularization of science**