It is now a month since sowing our first agroforest plot during the last days of February. A month later Rolman Velarde and Rodrigo Flores returned to assess how the seedlings were doing: how many had died, what evidence of pest damage there was and how they had grown. As you can see in the image above progress has been good. Whilst they may not have grown very quickly, none had died and only a few had suffered what looks like cricket damage despite most having aquired the protection of ants attracted to the nectary glands on their leaves. We were also reassured to see that ‘weeds’ have not grown up faster than anticipated which means that our plan to weed every two months should be effective. The wet-season is now starting to abate and in three months the driest time of year will test their establishment.
Rolman and Rodrigo’s follow-up visit to our first pasture plot was similarly re-assuring. This despite the more open and exposed site making seedlings vulnerable to drying out and bleaching when first planted, and the more compacted ground. Again there was very low if any mortality despite some of the seedlings of transplanted origin having been quite small.