Exploring in Locomotive Garden


Long rail, heavy smoke, turning wheels, everything about the old train seems to stay in a variety of films and photography. With the revive of retro trend, traveling by train becomes a fashion way again.

Perhaps you have heard that top ten locomotives of Shanghai had become a place where fashionistas must go. However, this place is still a stretch of uncultivated land.

But……this locomotive is different.

It  is neither a tourist attraction, nor has protection. As a locomotive on the old railway, it is strange. What around it is not cold fences, passerby’s flash, but the most natural breeze and sunshine, green shade, pieces of crops and passing birds. The narrow strip next to the rail used to be abandoned, now is growing vigor undertake design of Permaculture.

On 25th March, 2017, with the leading of YES Mentor——Zhen Lu, representatives from five school groups had chance to work in this mysterious garden, finding the secret of Permaculture.

In the activity, each group had a quest card, which was used to record the design of Permaculture students saw. Inside the garden, mentor had arranged some small signs. A small sign caused various imagine to students.


There is a green two-side-hollow box, which some students regarded it as a deadwood collection, some said it was a storage box of stakes……when mentor announced the answer, everybody was surprised that it was a box to attract insects!

Intercropping of crop can ensure the fertility of soil; flower bed is design as shape of lock which is easy for management; animal feces can be collected to attract earthworms which can produce organic fertilizer……those small details were all found out under students’ piercing eyes. With the increasing findings and deeper communication, students concluded the main point or Permaculture one by one. At this point, the mentor suggested them show the summary in the form of green map.


The garden of locomotive is divided into six areas. After students classified the elements of Permaculture, they marked them on the topographic map as the standard of one legend. After completion, group representatives introduced the thinking of classification. Each group accomplished the task seriously, some also introduced their own idea. Some groups said organic restaurant could be open besides the garden, appealing people to taste; some drew their favorite stickers into green map, adding fun and enjoyment.


Although time is limited, students all learned a great deal. They not only knew design of Permaculture, but also exercised their observation ability and divergent thinking. Golden rape flower, green plant and lovely puppy in garden, all made them feel worthy to learn knowledge in this natural environment.

Now, do you want to participate in such a workshop?

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