Tips Tree Planting: Making a Difference on National Tree Planting Day

Tips Tree Planting: Making a Difference on National Tree Planting Day

Manica Youth Assembly Trust (MAYA) and the local community members teamed up on December 3, 2022, to plant 100 trees in Devonshire along Sakubva River in Mutare, Zimbabwe. This remarkable event was part of the National Tree Planting Day, a yearly celebration organized by the Forestry Commission. The aim of this initiative is to inspire the nation to plant and conserve trees, raise awareness about the importance of forests, and enhance biodiversity to combat climate change.

Zimbabwe has been severely affected by climate change, experiencing shifting seasons, unpredictable rainfall patterns, and recurring droughts and floods. These climate-related challenges have resulted in socio-economic and food security issues, particularly in vulnerable rural communities that rely on farming for their livelihoods. Furthermore, these communities heavily depend on trees for firewood, cooking, brick molding, and thatching homes, leading to increased soil erosion and degradation.

To address these issues, MAYA has been steadfast in organizing tree planting activities throughout Mutare and the province, even beyond the rainy season. Their goal is to instill a culture of tree planting among citizens, emphasizing the importance of taking action at any time of the year.

The chosen planting site in Devonshire was strategically selected for maximum impact. The area is densely populated, and the proximity to Sakubva River, which experiences annual flooding during the rainy season, has caused significant erosion and posed a threat to nearby houses. Planting trees along the riverbank will not only mitigate erosion but also ensure the survival of the trees, as they can derive water from the river.

The tree planting event attracted various local stakeholders, including influential community figures such as church leaders, youth leaders, and members of civic society. Participants received crucial messages on the significance of reforestation and gained insights into the effects of climate change on communities. Knowledgeable speakers shared valuable information on nursery establishment, seed production, and tree planting preparation, empowering attendees to contribute to the cause.

Trees are a valuable renewable resource, but their survival depends on humanity’s commitment to replenishing what is consumed. In Zimbabwe, the increased demand for energy, coupled with power supply challenges, has put additional pressure on trees as residents resort to using them for fuel and construction purposes. This unsustainable cycle must come to an end. Tree planting remains a primary and sustainable exercise to restore depleted forests and preserve biodiversity. It is a cost-effective solution that can be undertaken at the family or individual level, yielding significant benefits for humanity and the climate.

The National Tree Planting Day serves as a unified effort to rally the nation around afforestation, with a particular focus on planting indigenous species. By planting these species, we ensure their protection and prevent them from becoming extinct. While exotic trees have economic value, our indigenous trees hold cultural, religious, and economic significance, defining our country and culture. They serve as an essential warning system and a community pharmacy, supporting biodiversity. Given the slow growth rate and difficulty in replacing indigenous trees once they have been cut down, intensifying efforts to replant them is crucial. In this year’s national tree planting season, the primary tree chosen for planting is the mukute/muhute tree, an indigenous species.

Let’s join hands in making a difference on National Tree Planting Day and beyond. Visit Tips Tree Planting for more information and tips on tree planting, gardening, and creating a sustainable future for our planet. Together, we can restore our forests and protect our environment for generations to come.

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