Tinghir and Todra valley.

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Todra palm-grove

From Todra Gorges to Tinghir and still twenty kilometers further east, the Oued Todra winds between hills and desert plains and watered with water from the High Atlas a narrow valley that converts into a heavenly orchard, full of palm trees, olive and other fruit trees.

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Todra river.
Todra river

The Todra river, whose name is sometimes write Todgha or Toudgha, breaks with difficulties through the chains of the High Atlas, performing the Todra Gorge, and receives in the source of Tizgui a large flow of water flow through the basement. From there it continues through the interior of a cliff between the last chains of the mountain, up to Tinghir. After, it opens into the great plain to meander slightly over twenty kilometers, to Agoudim n'Ait Yazza. Absorbed by a large number of irrigation canals, water of Todra river usually does not arrive until Ferkla oasis, located 50 km east from Tinghir; its bed cross Ferkla, then it jumps into the Gheris, but water only arrives to Gheris during heavy flooding and usually only for a few days.

Todra palm-grove near the Gorges.
Todra palm-grove near the Gorges

The Todra palm-grove, very dense and extensive, consists only in the two banks of the Oued Todra. It is irrigated by a network of pipes called Tirgouine (plural of Targa). It is shaded in its full extent by a multitude of palm trees, to which mingle in its northern part, thanks to the abundance of water, orchards with almost all varieties of fruit trees: apples, pears, plums, apricots, quinces, pomegranates, figs, almonds, peaches... All vegetables are also represented: tomatoes, mint, squash, carrots, turnips, beans and also grapes.

Todra palm-grove.
Crops in the Todra oasis

Lower, with water scarcity, there are more barley and almond trees, that better support the lack of water. In the lower valley, the river flow is not enough to feed the palm-grove. A system called Nouba is organized so that each village or Ighrem has in turn almost all of the rest of the flow of the river for a set number of days from two to four depending of the size of the village and fields to water.

Todra palm-grove.
Todra palm-grove in the low course

The rest of the time, irrigation is assured by collective wells, whose depth is up to 60 m, equipped with a diesel engine. People use it in turn to irrigate their fields. Even lower, in addition to the well, there are Fogaras, also named Khettaras, underground channels that carry water for several kilometers across the plateau and may be identified by the line of manholes that allow digging and clearing them.

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Palm tree in flower.
Palm tree in flower
Alfalfa.
Alfalfa
Fig tree.
Fig tree
Broad beans.
Broad beans
Olive tree.
Olive tree
Corn.
Corn
Pomegranate tree.
Pomegranate tree
Almond tree.
Almond tree

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