Dear friends and followers,
Last weekend, we visited our plantation in Vărzărești (Nisporeni district). Here, we planted several species with open root systems, especially honey-bearing plants, and oak saplings grown in containers. It's worth noting that the terrain here is quite challenging: heavy soil, occasional clay, left uncultivated for over 20 years. Additionally, the land is sloping, once an orchard, and soil preparation was limited to creating holes with a tractor. This year, like the previous one, experienced a severe drought, and after planting, the saplings received no care.

All these factors combined allowed us to conduct a rather rigorous yet compelling experiment without any prior planning. The survival rate of saplings with open root systems (conventional saplings) barely exceeds 40%. Meanwhile, for saplings grown in containers, it reaches 70-80%, which is quite impressive given the challenging conditions. You can see this in the photos and, if you wish, visit the site before the leaves fall to witness the situation firsthand.

Here, it's also worth mentioning other advantages of container-grown saplings:

  • Saplings grow from seed to ready for planting in 3-4 months, instead of 2-3 years.
  • You can plant them practically year-round (if soil moisture allows), instead of just 4-5 weeks a year, in early spring and late autumn.
  • The need for saplings per hectare is 2-3 times lower.
  • Soil preparation requirements are significantly reduced (meaning lower costs).
  • Care and maintenance work is also much less demanding (further cost savings).

This practical experience convinces us once again of the prospects of container-grown saplings in the face of climate change. Even though their production is more expensive and container nurseries require substantial investments, the end results more than justify the means!

The main obstacle in transitioning to containerized cultivation, in our view, lies in the habits of foresters and seedling producers that have been established for centuries, as well as the lack of suitable equipment and, possibly, the desire to embrace innovation. Paradigms change slowly, unfortunately. That's why we applied to the National Environmental Fund with the project "Completion of the Construction and Pilot Operation of the First Educational Nursery in Container Cultivation in the Republic of Moldova." Here, in addition to actual sapling production, we plan to provide educational courses for various target groups. The main goal is to introduce container cultivation techniques and encourage responsibility for one's own communities by initiating new community forest plantings. See the project nursery renderings at the end of the gallery.

We invite you to support our initiative with likes and shares.

The tree planting in Vărzărești was made possible through collaboration with the GEF Small Grants Programme, managed by UNDP-Moldova, as well as the joint efforts of the local administration of Vărzărești, several private donors, both individuals and legal entities, and volunteers.

The planting of saplings in containers was carried out !!ATENTION!! on 12 MAY together with students and teachers from the Nisporeni Vocational School. The difference in the appearance of the planting site between spring and its current state, after a dry summer we all experienced, is quite noticeable.

Unfortunately, we have received only the video in Russian, so it remains here. If you were with us, please do share it.

И СНОВА О ПРЕИМУЩЕСТВАХ РАСТЕНИЙ, ВЫРАЩЕННЫХ В КОНТЕЙНЕРАХ Дорогие друзья и единомышленники, На прошедших выходных мы...

Posted by Alexandru Vasile Sainsus on Saturday, October 21, 2023