National Geographic : 1972 Dec
To redeem their arid land, Israelis use 90 percent of its water for irriga tion, the highest rate in the world. At a reservoir near the Sea of Galilee (facing page), technicians sample water destined for the country's life line, the 140-mile conduit that snakes through fertile coastal plains and into the northern Negev desert. Weeding with a hoe, a farmer on an agricultural cooperative by the Sea of 834 Galilee (above) cultivates the earth around a fruit tree fed by a high pressure spray containing fertilizer. Deep in the Negev (below), diked catchments funnel scanty rainfall to the low corner of each square, granting the sip of survival to a single almond tree, a North African technique. Agron omists also employ irrigation methods of the ancient Nabataeans, who were farming here in the time of Christ.