Tozeur is a lush and bountiful oasis dotted with “palmeries” as they call them here. These are farms – of date palms. The more ingenious grow a great deal else too – pomegranates, figs, peaches, bananas and various vegetables.
The oasis is enormous – and rich – fed by hot springs and carefully tended like a giant garden.
One of the gardeners shins up a palm tree to show us how quickly he can do it. In March and April, he climbs up and down roughly 35 times a day. He’s 56 now and has been doing this since he was 11. Ibn Chabbat’s irrigation system is still in use but with mod cons such as electric water pumps.