Tree Project

The tree project is the reforestation of Ecuador through the actions of schools and individuals.  The project’s main objective is to plant 300 trees in 30 minutes with the aid of local school children.

In the first step of the project a program will be developed in the “Daniel Goleman School”  with the assistance of school director Alfredo Lincango, in southern Quito.   On March 25th a meeting was held with Mr. Lincango, in which areas of the school grounds were sectioned to plant the trees.  An introduction to the local student was established to introduce the students to the individuals who will be heading the project.

This alliance will begin with planting 30 trees on a portion of the school’s property.  The students of the school ranging from 2 to 11 will assist in the project and be taught skills on planting and keeping trees alive, as well as alternative methods to prevent the next generation from relying on trees as a main natural resource.

Once the 30 trees have been planted students will be encouraged to plant one tree at their home to nurture and show what they have learned.  The program will educate the students both in Spanish and English to help further their language studies.  The Daniel Goleman School is the first Ecological school in the Sangolqui Valley of Amaguana Quito- Ecuador.

May, 23, 2010

On my way to plant Amaranto seeds.

On May 14, 2010, I did an agreement of mutual benefits with the non-profit organization called Red Semillas “redsemillas.org”. These guys are creating an enormously labor intensive effort to rescue and plant seeds that no longer exist in Ecuador. They are planting seeds to save the millenary culture of thousands of native Indian communities across South of Colombia and Ecuador. Karla Muños, who works for “redsemillas.org,” showed me the seeds of different kinds of plants I hadn’t any clue about until now. I learned about the maracuyá negro, it is a small fruit with a lot of sweet seeds. This fruit is used to prepare different kinds of gourmet dishes and desserts. Also, I learned about the “Tocte,” a South American version of the nuts, which I haven’t tasted yet, the “Chamburo y/o Chihualcan,” which is a smaller version of the regular papaya fruit, and the “guaba tree,” the guaba’s seeds are also sweet and local people eat it like a dessert.

 Maracuyá Negro

Tocte’s seeds

 Chamburo

Red Semillas is working with the “Amaranto” seeds, the plant has red or white flowers and it is similar to the “quinua”. It was chosen by NASA, the CELSS crop (Controlled Ecological Support System: the plant removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and at the same time, produces food, oxygen, and water to the astronauts). The amaranto seed has a higher protein percentage, 16%, than the traditional cereals, like corn 17%, rice 8.77%, and wheat 14.84%. According to the FAO (Food Administration Office), the amaranto seed has 75% of protein followed by cow’s milk 72%, soy 68%, and wheat 93%.

Karla and Rogelio showed me the process to plant the amaranto seeds:

1. – Put the seeds in a plastic container with humid dirt.

2. – Water the seeds regularly.

3. – Maintain the plastic containers in a safe place, avoid pets, and birds.

4. – A little plant will sprout and you will see the first 4 leaves, at this time the amaranto plant is ready to be transplanted (this process takes between 15 to 20 days).

5. – Plant the amaranto plants with a 40 cm distance between each other.

The best part is that with one gram of amaranto seeds, people can plant 800 plants.

The next process is collecting the seeds from the plant, you will see in the following pictures, the amaranto plant, the colleting process, and the seeds.

Amaranto  Plant

Now I’m ready to plant 800 amaranto seeds, with the help of the students from the Daniel Goleman School.  The next episode, I will show you how we will plant the seeds with the kids, pictures, and experiences about this project.

If you want to join or help us, please don’t hesitate to contact me!

Sincerely,

Danilo Luzuriaga

%d bloggers like this: