Planting the trees!
As part of a generous donation made to SINAL thanks to the iGiveTrees Campaign, we were able to plant 500 trees in some of the most degraded lands of our property. This planting was particular special because we were able to obtain saplings from two highly threatened tree species that are nearly extinct - Jussara and Jacaranda Caviuna. Jussara trees have little blue berries, similar to the acai berry, that are edible; however, the tree has been brutely cut down for years for its palm heart, that while delicious, is deadly to the tree. In fact, the tree has become so endangered that it is actually a federal crime to cut down a tree and can land one in jail. Yet somehow, it continues to happen.
The process of planting these trees was quite special as well because of several reasons. Firstly, in our search for the 500 saplings, we took several journeys to different nurseries in the area. Specifically, we discovered that the state water treatment company has reforestation projects throughout the area where they produce saplings. They understand that the forested hills of the Mata Atlantica are what allows the entire city of Rio de Janeiro to have fresh water - therefore, restoring the degraded lands is absolutely essential to them. We visited two different nurseries, each with a different variety of species. Therefore, we were able to maximize the biodiversity of the 500 trees we planted.
Secondly, throughout the process of the tree planting, we were able to include many diverse groups of people to planting. From local community members in the town of Santo Antonio, to international volunteers, to a group of undergraduate Harvard students who came fora learning journey at SINAL, many hands and hearts were part of the planting. It was very touching to see how inspired people were to be able to be part of the planting - there is something very special about getting to plant a tree in the Mata Atlantica. We are very, very grateful for the donation and are honored to have been able to be part of it.
The following is a list of species from the Mata Atlantica that we planted:
Euterpe edulis (jussara)*,
Garcinia sp. (bacupari),
Jacaratia spinosa (mamao do mato),
Eugenia brasiliensis (grumixama),
Spondias morbin (caja mirim),
Inga vera (inga),
Zeyheria tuberculosa (ipe felpudo),
Dalbergia nigra (jacaranda caviuna)*,
Senna sp. (aleluia),
Cedrela fissilis (cedro),
Cassia leptophylla (falso barbatimao),
Schinus molle (aroeira salsa),
Citharexylum myrianthum (pau viola),
Ceiba speciosa (paineira rosa),
Handroanthus sp. (ipe cascudo),
Albizia sp. (angico pururuca),
Licania tomentosa (oiti),
Pterocarpus violaceus (aldrago).