The Israeli farmers who are giving their land a year’s rest

Starting the second week of September, Israeli organic farmer Ben Rosenberg will stop planting in the field. He will grow his veggies in raised containers inside fabric-covered hothouses until next September.

The hothouse setup was expensive, and he will only be able to grow about half the usual 40 seasonal varieties he raises in the field during a normal year. But it’s not going to be a normal year. The year 5782 on the Jewish calendar—starting at sundown on Sept. 6—is a sabbatical year for the land.