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.
Jul 25, 2011

Getting Connected

Euphonia, forest connectivity dependent
Euphonia, forest connectivity dependent

Another great progress report from Mary Blizzard, secretary of LRFF/US, my best friend and greatest supporter of LRFF. After writing this report she went ahead and donated to it again. Thank you Mary. Come on everyone let's get this one planted!! RWS

I’ve been lucky enough to return to Costa Rica for a short visit. I am amazed yet again at how rapidly things grow in this environment. Trees that I helped plant just two years ago are already taller than I am. A small forest that I helped plant three years ago has trees in so tall that I can stand underneath their canopy. This incredibly rapid growth is part of what gives me hope that sustained efforts in reforestation will help bring our mother Earth back into balance. Tropical forests are the lungs of the Earth, their depletion has created an imbalance that we witness as wide-spread droughts in parts of the world and unprecedented flooding in others. 

This project when funded will plant 2,500 trees in an area that is now open pasture. These trees will rapidly grow from small seedlings to tall trees, capable of absorbing over 30 tons of CO2, replacing it with life-sustaining oxygen. The trees will also form a corridor for the many animals living in adjacent forests, expanding their territory thus increasing their chances for survival. (Being trapped in forest islands is one of the causes of species depletion as the gene pool is limited and weakness becomes inbred.) Your donation to this project will make you a partner in these rewarding outcomes. Thank you for caring, for loving your mother, the Earth, and for making a donation to our reforestation efforts

Chicha injured due to lack of forest connectivity
Chicha injured due to lack of forest connectivity

Links:

Jul 25, 2011

Song of the Jungle

Mantled Howler Monkey in forest cover
Mantled Howler Monkey in forest cover

The vision many people have of Costa Rica is that of tranquil beaches alongside massive areas of uninterrupted jungle. Although there are indeed many beautifully forested areas in the country, the fact is that cattle farming and development have destroyed much of the original forest cover. The preservation of existing forested areas is of utmost importance therefore, because it is from mature forests that both seed and seedlings are gathered for reforestation efforts. 

Still, the abundance of life in the Costa Rican forests never ceases to amaze me. As I write this update I’m listening to the percussive rhythm of cicadas accompanying the persistent two-toned song of the long-tailed manakin. A few moments ago a troop of howler monkeys added a base line to the melody. It’s the song of the jungle, a soothing reminder of the inter-relatedness of all life.

The forest of El Farallon, about fifteen miles from where I sit at La Reserva, hosts its own chorus of diverse species. These animals, birds, and insects are dependent upon the existence of this forest for their survival just as we are dependent upon you, our donors, to help us in its preservation. Please donate today and help us preserve the forested acreage of El Farallon and the melody of life within it.

Fruit of the Stilt Palm on forest floor
Fruit of the Stilt Palm on forest floor

Links:

Jun 14, 2011

14,330 Trees Planted in 10 Days!

Roberta and Pierre Andres, CEO & Founder, Sole Tec
Roberta and Pierre Andres, CEO & Founder, Sole Tec

March 18, 2011 - LRFF, the Maleku people and etnies shoes (Sole Technology) inaugurated the Buy a Shoe, Plant a Tree campaign (BASPAT) for the Rio Sol Biological Corridor with a grand event and ceremonial tree planting.

June 2011 - Since the inauguration etnies has been promoting the BASPAT campaign all around the world.

January 2011 - LRFF has agreed via a formal contract to provide a minimum of $10,000 toward the planting of the Rio Sol project.  To date we (LRFF/CR and LRFF/US) have donated approximately $7600. We have received, to date, three installments from Sole Technology totaling $8750. These installments are paid to the LRFF/US office in Houston and are disbursed to LRFF/CR as needed for the project. The Rio Sol project is also listed on the Global Giving philanthropic website where donors from around the world may donate. We have now accumulated more that $15,000 (see the Rio Sol expense sheet for deposits) of the $61,000 needed to finish the project.

January 2011 - we began approaching landowners along the Rio Sol and within the Maleku Reserve about participating by allowing us to reforest areas of their properties. The landowners that were interested were given bags and instructed on how to collect baby trees and build their own nurseries so that in June LRFF/CR could buy the trees in each landowners nursery at .50 (USD) per tree to be planted in the project. For example, if a landowner wanted to participate with 1 hectare we asked him to plant a nursery of 1000 trees. We always plant a minimum of 1000 trees per hectare of 80+ species. 

March 2011 - For this first stage of the Rio Sol project we ended up with 13.75 hectares to be planted with six different landowners.

May 24,, 2011 - LRFF/CR did an inventory of all the participating landowners nurseries to make a count of the number of species and how many trees would be available for the planting of this first stage scheduled to start on the 30th of May.

May 25, 2011 - The next day we did an inventory of the La Reserva nursery and found that we had enough trees to start planting on the scheduled day. The final inventory was 113 native tree species and 14,000+ trees.

May 26, 2011 - we paid all of the landowners for the trees in their nurseries and made plans to begin planting at Franklin Mojica’s farm in Palenque Tonjibe first. 

Monday, May 30, 2011 – The “team” of about 16 Maleku everyday workers, Daniel Spreen Wilson (supervisor) and Omar Muñoz (field manager) began planting the Mojica property of 4 hectares. They finished this property on Thursday afternoon after planting 5000 trees.

Friday, June 3, 2011 – The “team” planted Julio Tinoco’s 1 hectare area in Palenque Sol along the Rio Sol with more than 1000 trees.

Monday, June 6, 2011 – Planting began on Alex Vela Vela’s 3.5 hectares area along the Rio Sol. The planting team planted 3500 trees by late Tuesday morning and began planting on Chino’s 3.75 hectares. They finished Chino’s farm on Wednesday and went to Isidro Acosta’s farm in Palenque Margarita and began preparing the area to be planted.

Thursday, June 9, 2011 – The team chopped with machetes the one hectare area of Isidros’s and began planting more than 1000 trees. On Friday they finished planting the last 400 trees. Daniel drove by to see how the trees were doing at the Mojica property, planted the week before. He took a photo and said he’s never seen trees doing so well.

Monday, June 13,2011 – The last property, Belmer Blanco Blanco’s, of ½ hectare will be planted. Fence must be built and an alley way for the cattle to reach the Rio Sol to drink but the team estimates they will finish the same day or early on Tuesday.

The maintenance of this first stage of the Rio Sol Biological Corridor project will begin in two months, August, and will continue for the next two years. Now we must go to work finding more participants and funding to accomplish the second stage of the project, another 21 hectares. Will you help us to.................

Keep Planting?!

Store window display, BASPAT
Store window display, BASPAT
Store display window for BASPAT
Store display window for BASPAT
Nursery at the Franklin Mojica farm
Nursery at the Franklin Mojica farm
Inventory group, volunteers for LRFF/US
Inventory group, volunteers for LRFF/US
Alexis Vela receiving a check from Daniel Spreen
Alexis Vela receiving a check from Daniel Spreen
Planting at Franklin Mojica’s farm
Planting at Franklin Mojica’s farm
Horses carrying trees to planting destination
Horses carrying trees to planting destination
Men and women planting
Men and women planting
Preparing the planting area at Isidro Acosta
Preparing the planting area at Isidro Acosta's
First four hectares planted the week before
First four hectares planted the week before
The Maleku planting team
The Maleku planting team
The car, “Joya”, hauling trees back and forth
The car, “Joya”, hauling trees back and forth

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