Friday, February 3, 2017

SOLCOM launches sanctuary of indigenous tree species
By Connie B. Destura

LEGAZPI CITY, Feb. 3 (PNA)--The Southern Luzon Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (SOLCOM-AFP) launched on Friday the second phase of a sanctuary of endangered and indigenous tree species in Camp Guillermo Nakar in Lucena City, that will be replicated in all infantry brigade headquarters in Southern Luzon, that includes Bicol, said an official of SOLCOM.

Maj. Virgilio Perez, SOLCOM information officer, in an interview, said the Camp Guillermo Nakar Endangered and Indigenous Tree Sanctuary or CGNEITS project, which they called “Tree Growing,” seeks to advocate the propagation and preservation of Philippine native trees.

He said the tree sanctuary, a joint project of SOLCOM, government agencies and other stakeholders, encourages uniformed personnel and people in the community to take care of the endangered trees species.

“SOLCOM has collaborated with the Los BaƱos-based Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Ecosystem Research and Development Bureau for the technical supervision of the project,” said Perez.

He said some 235 trees have been planted aside from the trees that were planted during the first phase. The tree species planted included Kamagong, Bitaog, Balobo, Igang, Catmon, Ipil, Akle, Molave, Tindalo, Supa, Dalingdingan and Kalantas.

He added the project, which also seeks to enhance public awareness on the diverse but fragile ecosystem, is a work in progress but it hopes to protect and preserve the environment for the next generation.

Perez said they have thought of including an “adopt-a-tree” scheme that would involve one civilian participant and one military personnel taking care of at least one of the 265 trees.

“Care involves weeding, cultivating, fertilizing and securing and securing the planted tree with the ‘adopter’ continuously visiting their planted seedlings until these are stable or at least three months old,” said Perez.

Ninety percent of the trees are expected to grow within three months. (PNA) FPV/GVR/CBD