In July, there was supposed to be a little less work, but exactly the opposite was the case. Certainly also because we had quite a few visitors who wanted to see our projects but also had many questions about our activities. This required a good organization to fill the gaps between our obligatory visits to Mati, Monkayo, Montevista and Marilog (Patag). Surely you noticed in the enumeration that all our projects take place in places beginning with the letter “M”, but this is pure coincidence.

Bamboo From the mayor’s office in Monkayo we have received an additional area of five hectares to plant bamboo, because more and more products are made of bamboo. The demand is assured. However, the “Eco- and Business Park Maiti” in Monkayo does not offer more than the then 15 hectares. The good thing is that this expansion will allow us to offer additional bamboo sets. Take advantage of it. Read our offer here:

Mahagoni- und Teakbäume We have been practicing again to be fit for harvesting the mahogany trees. The current inventory has shown that we can probably only start to cut the mahogany trees on a larger scale in 2025. his is because harvesting should be continuous. Since, as already written, the timber dealers do not accept whole logs at the moment, the trees have to be cut into planks with a chain saw, which is very time-consuming, i.e. expensive. We have therefore applied to the DENR for a permit for a mobile circular saw in order to be able to work faster. Since this is the first time that a mobile circular saw is to be approved in Monkayo, there are correspondingly many inquiries to be answered. But this is our life. The mahogany trees shown in the photos below are from our partner Madam Locsin in Monkayo, but not yet from the Mama Earth Farmer program.

The logs are cut into planks while still on the farm. The plank thickness is always a little more than two inches (5.08 centimeters) to plane two-inch planks from it later.

Control walk after the storm to count losses.

Pagatpat mangroves are the best frontliners.

Mangrovs Here, too, it goes on briskly. However, we have adapted our tactics a little and declared the hot midday as rest time. Especially in Mati, the temperatures are sometimes extreme. Although this means that we have fewer hours available, it is better to proceed in small steps instead of carrying out large planting operations that then require the midday period. The maximum was set at 15,000 mangroves a day after consultations with the planters, when we can start early in the morning. The start is always determined by the tide, because the plantings only begin when the water recedes from the coasts, that is, when the tide goes out.
Unfortunately, we notice that more and more plastic is floating in the sea. This is where we need to increase our efforts. Mama Earth is therefore also a member of the “Macro and Microplastic Group” in Mati. This is about the use of Plastk as a recyclable material to make other products from it, because burning it is not only CO2-rich, but also dangerous due to the toxic fumes. In the meantime, the sorted plastic waste is shredded and added to the wall blocks (hollow blocks) that are commonly used here. The addition makes the bricks more stable and durable. Another measure is to collect the plastic waste from the sea and to buy it. We use it to build chairs for schools in Davao. All small solutions, but a frustrating, because endless story, especially since the beverage manufacturers increasingly rely on plastic bottles to save the expensive return transport of glass bottles from the many islands. Recycling is left to consumers, knowing full well that few do it. So there’s only one way to go: consistently do without single-use plastic.
The Amihan group, which keeps the beach free of plastic for the mother turtles and hatchlings, is very active and has already helped thousands of little turtles find their way into the sea this year. Not only barrier free from plastic, but protected from cats, dogs and birds that love to eat the little sea turtles. However, in order to release this amount of hatchlings, the eggs must also be dug out of the nests and moved to guarded and fenced areas for incubation in the hot sand. This is because the eggs are also a favorite food of wild dogs, but also a lot of people take the eggs to fry them in the pan.
With all these activities we would have liked to extend the month of July to 41 days, but we do not want to change the calendar as well. We are busy enough to change the mindset of people to be more respectful to nature.

Nicolai Kronberg and Don Don Gayatin deliver another ten school chairs to Dona Rosa High School in Mati.

The little turtles can run into the sea without barriers when the plastic waste has been removed from the beach.