2 To the 60th anniversary of turning Wild Lands into Fertile Lands

To the 60th anniversary of turning Wild Lands into Fertile Lands

“For the second year in a row, the primacy among the mechanization is held by the farm” Lenin Zholy ” in Kokchetav region by communist Marat Mutagarova. Along with him there are three siblings – the Communists Rafhat, Rashid and Farid”/ Photo: Iosiph Budnevich


To get quick results and high harvest, virgin lands were fertilized with chemicals. Their consumption, and accordingly, production in the country has doubled.

“Here it is, virgin bread” / Photo: V. Krupin


Staff ignored the particular climate of the steppe zone – active use of fertilizers has led to frequent dusty storms, erosion, and loss of soil fertility.

“Kazakhstanets” tractors on the shipping site of Pavlodar Tractor Plant” / Photo: Joseph Budnevich

“Achievements of a senior of Lugovskoy stud farm Zhambyl region, delegate of the XXVI Congress of the CPSU, Hero of Socialist Labor, first virgin soil lander Nadir Begaziev are widely known” / Photo: Iosiph Budnevich

“On the central current” / Photo: Joseph Budnevich

“Gravshina Luba (on the left) and Galina Kazakova “/ Photo: Alexander Gostev


The sharp outflow of the work force from the central part of the Soviet Union had a negative impact on the performance of agricultural production in these regions. In 1974, the authorities announced a “second virgin soil” – this time in nonblack earth European part of Russia.

“Animal husbandry – the second virgin soil of Kazakhstan. The animal husbandry feeding complex for 30 thousand sheep in the Uighur district of the Almaty region “/ Photo: Joseph Budnevich


Plowing of giant lands in Kazakhstan has led to a reduction of pasture and hay fields. This reflected in the traditional sectors of agriculture in the region – animal husbandry, which was in the early 1960s in a crisis.

“A worker of the elevator Ayman Seytkasimova” / Photo: Oleg Knorring

“Mayra Khasenova spent twenty-third harvest time in the combine. Before going into the field. Mayra Khasenova, husband Saylubek and son Moscow (the son is named after the capital) “/ Photo: Joseph Budnevich

“Worker of gas-station of Nazarevskaya MTS in Altai Territory Lubov Serova” / Photo: Galina Sanko


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2 Responses to “To the 60th anniversary of turning Wild Lands into Fertile Lands”

  1. Martin Barlow says:

    These are great pictures in the way they illustrate the propaganda that was produced at the time, and the hope that went with Khrushchev’s idea, which seemed a good one for the first couple of years. However, while it’s mentioned in passing, perhaps a bit more about how the soil and climate in fact proved quite unsuitable for this type of cultivation would have been appropriate, and how the soil ended up sterile and unproductive, with widespread erosion. In the long term it proved a bit of a disaster as far as I understand it, though I stand to be corrected.

  2. RB says:

    All of these pictures of Russia are very interesting. The health of hard working people and the happiness of the children. We lost a lot of what was good for us. Now too much sugar is killing everyone in the world.

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