Two months on: how the seedlings are developing

It is over two months since we planted our first seeds and after a good start our seedlings are  thriving despite the unwanted attention of crickets. Some of the seedlings are now 35 cm tall and will be ready to plant out within a few weeks.

Motacusal dec 2103
The seedling nursery at Motacusal has done very well. The community have even prepared and planted some additional seed (Image: Rolman Velarde)

Most rewarding for us is the fact that two of the communities have planted additional seeds themselves and so applied some of the skills that we hoped they would acquire. Below you can see a new batch of seeds being planted at Palacios.

Palacio dec 2013 3
The community at Palacios have also decided to plant additional seed. This is a great way for them to gain confidence with preparing seed and establishing a nursery, potentially valuable skills (Image: Rolman Velarde)

Crickets are a persistent if minor problem. Together with nocturnal species which decapitate the seedlings we also have smaller day ones which eat the leaves. In order to stem this growing problem we opted to fumigate the nursery. We only have three years to get our system working and so losing a year to crickets could have a big knock-on effect.

Motacusa dec 2013 cricket 1
Crickets have continued to be a problem. Not simply decapitating seedlings but also eating the leaves. Because of the density of our seedlings it is impossible to control this by hand so we decided to fumigate with insecticide (Image: Rolman Velarde)

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