The site of Auroville was once a backward and impoverished rural area, surrounded by 13 villages with a population of over 40,000 people. Bare and eroded, it was mainly wasteland. A number of Aurovilians took up the task of 'bringing this land back to life' with the help of these villagers. After twenty years of hard work, they have succeeded in regenerating the soil on a long-term basis through biological farming methods without using any artificial fertilizers or chemical products. The two million trees planted by them on 2,800 acres of once-arid land have successfully created a lush green belt, which is beautiful to behold.