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Blog by MBP Volunteer, Racheal

Photos courtesy of Racheal




On the Reforestation Team work starts in the nursery. There are currently 6 MBP nurseries around Kianjavato. One at KAFS and the others in nearby villages, some of which I’m still attempting to pronounce correctly; Ambolotara, Kianjavato, Antanabeloha, Vatovavy and Ambodifandramanana! Each nursery is run by its own team of people from the surrounding community and each has its own local ‘Single Mums Club’ helping out.




There is a large team of people working on reforestation full of local knowledge and enthusiasm. Many of the seeds we sow are collected from the forest and there is always something new brought in for everyone to debate over. I’ve really enjoyed learning about all the different species we grow, these are some of my favourites:

Different shades of Tsily

Different shades of Tsily

Hazo Mena (Hazo meaning ‘tree’ and Mena meaning ‘red’ in Malagasy)

There is always a job to do around the nursery from sorting and sowing seeds, transplanting seedlings, sorting compost and weeding. This month we also found time to buy avocados from market, eat them for lunch and then plant the seeds in the afternoon!

Assortment of Seeds
Signs of life in a germination box at KAFS that will next be transplanted into pots

We mainly help out at KAFS nursery but visit the others regularly to make sure everyone has what they need and collect seedlings that are ready for planting. Having the opportunity to meet and work with people across all the local communities. It is always exciting collecting seedlings for planting which usually involves Zézé driving around the team in the Big Truck. I can attempt to carry and load as many heavy baskets packed with seedlings into the back as I can while the Malagasy guys jog back and forth carrying two baskets at a time balanced over their shoulder on bamboo or simply and effortlessly on their head.

My once avocado lunch
The Big Truck

There is still wildlife to be found among all the plants:

Boophis tephraeomystax found at KAFS nursery
Tiny Praying Mantis on a Tsily plant