Chinampas were artificial Islands, were created by staking out shallow lake bed and then fencing in the rectangle with wattle. The area would be filled with mud and vegetation. Often willows would be planted along the edge of the plot, to provide further stable fencing as well shade. Chinampas were separated by channels wide enough for the a conoe.
Maize, beans, squash, chili peppers and tomatoes were the primary crops for chinampas, they were also used to grow flowers.
Food consumed by the city of Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capital is estimated up to one-half to two-thirds, were provided by chinampas. Farming was begun in Xochimilco and Chalco. The Aztecs also conducted military campaigns to obtain control of these regions. Today the city of Tenochtitlan is known as Mexico City. Tenochtitlan was considerably enlarged overtime due to the use of chinampas.
After the conquest of Mexico, most chinampas were abandoned. When the spanish arrived, the chinampas covered 9000 hectares. Chinampas can still be seen today, the remains of Lake Xochimilco.