The team is growing as fast as the trees grow: during the rainy season, Plant-for-the-Planet hires 80 new employees from the region to plant and care for trees on the plantation area in Mexico. This shows how valuable reforestation projects in countries of the South can be, not only to bind a lot of CO2 and to grow valuable, healthy forests, but also to benefit local people.
When Plant-for-the-Planet planted the first tree on its own forest on the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico on 8 March 2015, this place was a sad sight: An investor had cut down most of the trees. Three million new trees are now growing. And there are more and more to be: Plant-for-the-Planet has promised to plant one million more trees every year than in the previous year. Clearly, this requires manpower. And so 80 new forest workers are hired at the beginning of the rainy season in June - 180 men and women then work together on reforestation. Their tasks are varied: In the tree nursery they select the best seeds from which many small seedlings are grown. These small trees have to be watered so that they can grow vigorously. Then they come to the planting area, and here artificial irrigation is no longer necessary because the workers plant during the rainy season.
They prepare the planting area in such a way that the trees grow at an ideal distance. Later thinning will not be necessary. 94 percent of the trees grow well, the remaining trees, which do not survive the first year, are replaced by new seedlings. For the trees to grow so well, intensive care is needed: up to 20 times the workers move in with machetes and beat away the weeds - so each tree gets enough light. The success is visible: After only two years, the trees grow above the workers' heads.
The native tree species that grow here will now extract CO2 from the air for decades. But they also provide shelter for animals: monkeys screech their way through the treetops, a proud toucan can be admired. And in the lagoon, idyllically situated between the young tree rows, lives an alligator.
The most important animals for the trees are probably the bees: Farmers from the region set up their beehives in the young forests. This provides them with additional income - and pollination for the trees that are currently in bloom for the first time.
Every 15 seconds a new tree seedling is planted in the ground. And everyone can plant along. Simply by donating to Plant-for-the-Planet, keyword: trees, IBAN: DE13 7002 0500 0000 200 000, Sozialbank München - or here. 20 Euro donations are 20 new trees on the Yucatán Peninsula. Find out more about our planting project.
In this way, everyone can grow their own forest and help save the future of the children.