Adding trees to agriculture

Towards sustainable farming 

Great news! The Jovem project is making progress in actively contributing to a better world. This year, they partnered with the Belgian city Merksplas to carry out a reforestation campaign using native trees like qenhua and introducing trees like pine. They also set up an agroforestry nursery to produce their own trees, conserve others and encourage year-round tree planting.

Combining trees and agriculture offers several benefits, including wind protection and shade to crops, nitrogen extraction from the air, improved soil fertility, and habitats for beneficial insects and birds. This sustainable approach can lead to higher yields, less water usage, and reduced need for artificial fertilizers and pesticides, while also promoting biodiversity and ecosystem preservation. By integrating trees into agricultural practices, we can create a healthier environment for all living beings.

The students of the JOVEM project had classes on the importance of trees in agriculture and for nature, and were actively involved in producing forest plants in the nursery, growing different species such as qenhuas, mutuy, ayrampu, and pines. It wouldn’t be ‘Learning by doing’ if they weren’t involved in the planting, at the farm. After the classes, many students made plans, exchanged experiences, and organized themselves to continue planting in their own communities. Many students mentioned it was their first time planting a tree and were proud of their efforts and enthusiastic about the idea to see it grow further. 

Women as solid support

In the nursery, where plant were reproduced from seeds to plants in a bag, the girls in the project played a predominant role, as most of them showed more discipline and patience in this activity, ensuring that the plants receive the proper care they need to thrive. Consistent watering, fertilization, and pest control allowed the plants to grow and develop to their full potential, resulting in higher quality plants and a more successful outcome. 

To be continued

The first reforestation campaign was a success! And this is just the beginning of the Jovem project's admirable action. In 2023 they are highly motivated to continue growing and planting trees and even save native trees by collecting their seeds or replacing them in case of high risk. The project aims to plant an additional 2450 trees in 2023. 

By inspiring love for the environment in their students, the team shares its hope for a new generation of farmers, that farm in a more sustainable yet profitable way. 

The JOVEM project is made possible thanks to the support of the Collibri Foundation. This project was realised with the help of the City of Merksplas. 

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