DISOP Philippines

Environmental protection and conservation institutionalized by people’s organizations in selected barangays of Samar, Philippines

Two people’s organizations/associations in Samar relentlessly embrace the protection and conservation activities through the DISOP Philippines’ project.    This 2021, the associations established another 60 hectares of endemic tree species inside or within the buffer areas of the Samar Island Natural Park (SINP).  The beneficiaries are forever grateful to the donors of the DISOP Philippines project because aside from protecting their own community, the project provided employment to the populace especially during this COVID-19 pandemic.

The associations’ years of experience in establishing tree plantation speaks of how they manage to select good wildlings to plant and protect the biodiversity of the area.  To accommodate the volume of seedlings that they have to raise in the nursery, the association decided to construct three (3) temporary nurseries that are proximate to the plantation area.  Yakal (Shorea astylosa), a hard wood tree species endemic to Samar, is one of the wildlings reconditioned or rejuvenated in the nurseries before it is planted in the delineated plantation area.  Its population in the area is plenty but old enough to live for more years.  The planted trees will then become a good replacement of the older stocks and become the future mother trees.  Yakal is also classified as critically endangered and vulnerable species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).  Other species were white and red lauan (Shorea contorta/ Shorea negrosensis), bagonito (Xanthostemon verdugonianus), patsaragon (Syzygium crassibracteatum), narra (Pterocarpus indicus), and molave (Vitex parviflora).

Prior to the establishment of the plantation, the association seeks the assistance from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to survey and delineate the 50-hectare plantation.  Once completed, the association collects wildlings and raise it in the nurseries.  The wildlings stayed in the nursery for a month to be revitalized before it is planted in the field.  Planting the trees is undertaken through a pairing system where one does the brushing and staking while the other follows the stakes to plant the tree and clean its surroundings.  The association conforms to the planting distance of 4m X 5m which is the recommendation of the DENR in all their National Greening Program.

Reconditioned wildlings kept in the nursery are now ready for out planting in the field. This is a mixture of yakal and bagonito seedlings.
Handling and hauling of seedlings to the planting site.
Association member Mila Armada cleaned and ring weed a Bagonito tree (Xanthostemon verdugonianus) along one of the stakes.  Mila did not plant anymore the tree.  Instead, she cleaned the surrounding of an existing wildling.  This system is called assisted natural regeneration.
Association member Locita Ramirez planted a yakal tree (Shorea falciferoides) along one of the stakes prepared for planting. Yakal is one of the Dipterocarp species classified as critically endangered by IUCN. This year, the PO raised around 11,200 of this kind for planting.
Association BOD Saturnino Cebreros posed behind a red lauan tree (Shorea negrosensis) which is one of the many hard wood trees planted in the rainforestation site.  This 2021, the PO raised around 4,800 lauan wildlings.
The members of the association posed for a photo shoot after completing the planting of trees in the 50-hectare plantation. The association president Joseph Cabus (Center, above everyone, in green sweat shirt with a victory sign) is leading the group for the whole duration of the planting.
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