La Reserva Forest Foundation

La Reserva Forest Foundation is a Costa Rican non-profit, tax exempt foundation working to restore and preserve native tropical forests, dedicated to creating "tree bridges" linking isolated forest islands using volunteers and the local school communities, and fighting global warming through various carbon neutral projects.
Dec 27, 2011

2011 - THANK YOU, LOOK WHAT YOU'VE DONE!

Irma and Charlyn Acosta Elizondo, hauling trees
Irma and Charlyn Acosta Elizondo, hauling trees

*Read on, this project is urgently in need of funding. Since writing this update a week ago the trees are planted and maintenance is being done as I write, but we are without funds to continue the maintenance for two years and plant the final 4000 trees in this excellent project.

This past week Grupo MPD S.A. (Manejo Profesional de Desechos S.A.) was responsible for paying the planting team for this second stage of the Rio Sol Biological Corridor project. They gave all of their clients, more than 250, certificates of a tree/trees planted in their honor within the Rio Sol project. Thanks to Adrian Castro, CEO of Grupo MPD , who had this great idea, and all of MPD’s clients throughout Costa Rica.

November 28th work began on the second phase of the Rio Sol Biological Corridor. The first week the ten man planting team hauled the 21,000 trees out of the various Maleku nurseries and put them along the road, next to the Methodist Church in Palenque Tonjibe.

Felipa Alvarez and Edwin Elizondo’s nurseries were on the road to Viento Fresco where 17,000 of the trees would be planted. Felipa’s nursery was ½ kilometer from the main road so with the help of oxen the team spent the first day bringing her trees down to the road.

Jimmy Acosta E., LRFF’s field director, hired a tractor with a large trailer for hauling the trees from Palenque Tonjibe, as well as trees from Margarita, approximately 4 kilometers up to the planting site at Marvin Castro’s farm. Here is where the fun begins……

The eleven man crew would load the trailer with about 1500 trees, climb on where they could and ride with the trees up to the farm. On the way up, every trip, one resident ran out of his house yelling and making obscene gestures at everyone. Once at the farm the tractor would slosh through the mucky entrance road carrying each load to the area where the baby trees were to be planted.

On Monday, December 5th Dan ad a serious eye infection. The doctor ordered him to rest and not drive for a week. Yours truly, RWS, set out early Tuesday to spend the week planting with the crew.

Tuesday morning it was 5:00 am to catch the taxi/truck that delivers the team to the project ever morning and retrieves us in the afternoon. We dug holes, distributed trees and planted on a rainless day. By afternoon Jimmy, Chico, Deibys, Estefan and Ivar met the tractor to finish hauling the remaining trees. Two trips brought the rest of the trees up, we finished at 5:00 pm.

Thursday, Irma Acosta E., Jimmy’s sister, volunteered. It was great to have another girl on the planting team. She and I planted trees behind the hole-diggers. We get a rhythm going and it’s like a machine. Here’s the routine:

  1. Get the trees to the area to be planted
  2. Dig the holes (the smaller the better)
  3. Distribute trees to the holes or spot for planting
  4. Plant the trees (Jimmy had a great idea about using scissors to cut open the nursery bags and they work amazingly well, not disturbing the tender roots)
  5. Collect all of the empty, plastic nursery bags

When we quit at midday on Friday we had only one large pasture left to plant. The taxi didn’t show so we walked to Franklin Mojica’s house, our central meeting place each day, for planting up at Marvin’s. In less than four days this amazing team planted more than 8,000 trees.

Daniel went back to work this week and a HUGE thank you to Grupo MPD S.A. in Costa Rica. Because of their generous gift of trees to all of their clients the team had the funding to work this week. Thank you so much don Adrian!

The team will finish planting 17,000 trees at Marvin’s this week December 19th, just in time for Winter Solstice. They will follow the planting by doing maintenance on the trees in the first stage of the project, planted last June. The maintenance is urgent to free the, as yet, small trees from the vines and grasses so they can thrive. After the holiday we will plant the remaining 4000 trees on the other three participating properties in the Rio Sol Biological Corridor Project. Give a donation via a Tribute Card to this amazing project.

It’s amazing how well the transplanted trees do in this project. They are planted one day and the next day, when we pass by the same area, very few show signs of shock.

That’s the latest, greatest news from LRFF’s Rio Sol Biological Corridor. Wish we could share the fun and great pride we all have doing this work. Plant it and they will come! That’s what we say at LRFF and this little iguana can’t wait for us to finish. He came for a visit on Maikol’s shirt. HA!

LET’S ALL GET PLANTING!

Central storage of trees Methodist Church Tonjibe
Central storage of trees Methodist Church Tonjibe
Tractor, trailer and crew
Tractor, trailer and crew
Unloading the trees at the farm
Unloading the trees at the farm
The Maleku planting team
The Maleku planting team
Iguana in waiting
Iguana in waiting

Links:

Dec 1, 2011

Inspection Time and Looking Good

Orchid spray w/fragrance of vanilla
Orchid spray w/fragrance of vanilla

Two weeks ago we carried out our six month inspection of the forest and it is incredibly healthy thanks to the support of our donors, whose money goes towards environmental service payments for the carbon that it is sequestering. Payments for environmental services to the Monge’s for the habitat and CO2 sequestration saves 14 ha. of rainforest from being sold and developed, the habitat necessary for the resident wildlife and the resources needed by this family. This money helps the family to care for their two sons, one of which was born with Down's syndrome and suffers from a serious heart defect.

The family has been conserving this 14 hectare rainforest for decades. This forest is removing 210 metric tons of CO2/year from the Earth’s atmosphere. Offset your CO2 by helping this family.

Each separate flower bursting with aroma
Each separate flower bursting with aroma

Links:

Dec 1, 2011

Welcome Ranch=Rancho Bienvenido

Bienvenido Cruz w/Alfredo Acosta-Tribal Council
Bienvenido Cruz w/Alfredo Acosta-Tribal Council

We continue to work closely with the Maleku people for such as the Río Sol reforestation project. We are carrying out much valuable work involving this tiny tribe of 600, down from their initial 6000 members before the 19th century massacre of these indigenous people for their rubber trees during which time much of their ancestral land was taken from them.

These lands passed into the hands of non-indigenous farmers who deforested it for cattle farming. LRFF and the Maleku are reforesting the land they live on and we’re buying back the rest to be reforested as acquired. The Tribal Council, that governs the new communal lands, needs a meeting place. Presently we are borrowing venues costing us precious time to set up and move equipment and people to each venue.

Furthermore, the current Rancho has suffered greatly this year due to excessive rainfall in the area. During one visit, there were 2 inches of water covering the earth floor, making it impossible to hold meetings there.

LRFF is hoping to be able to present a new Rancho Bienvenido (welcome ranch) to the Maleku for Christmas. With a total build time of just 10 days, this is a viable option, however we are still in need of donations.

Local resident at the Maleku reserve
Local resident at the Maleku reserve

Links:

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