July 3, 2023
Author – Srinivas Abhilash
In our rapidly changing world, the impacts of climate change have brought forth new and daunting challenges for life on Earth. One pressing concern is the alarming rate at which our forests are being lost. Each year, approximately 10 million hectares of forest, equivalent to the size of Iceland, fall victim to deforestation world over. This relentless destruction has far-reaching consequences for both habitats and livelihoods.
Forests are vital in combating climate change. They store immense amounts of carbon, making them the largest land-based reservoir on Earth. Forests clean water, purify the air, capture carbon, provide food, and offer life-saving medicines. Forest conservation, afforestation, and eco-restoration are effective, affordable ways to fight climate change.
To address this urgent issue, we must recognize the imperative need to increase forest and tree cover in India. This can only be accomplished when each individual takes responsibility and actively participates in tree plantation.
India’s commitment to forest conservation is reflected in the National Forest Policy of 1988, which mandates that 33% of the country’s geographical area should be under forest or tree cover. Encouragingly, according to the India State of Forest Report 2021, forest cover now spans 7,13,789 square kilometers, accounting for 21.71% of the nation’s geographical area. This marks a significant increase of 67% from the 2019 reports.
Reduction in Natural Forests
The State of Forest Report 2021 of India has registered a reduction in the area of “Moderately Dense Forests” which are also called “Natural Forests”. The trend is accompanied by a huge increase in areas under “Open Forests” indicating forest degradation in India. It is also worth noting that the “Scrub Area” has also shown an alarming increase which means the complete degradation of Forests.
Van Mahotsav – A Festival to Celebrate Forests in India
Van Mahotsav is an annual tree-planting festival in India that takes place from July 1st to July 7th every year. It was initiated by Mr. K. M. Munshi in 1950, the then Union Minister for Agriculture and Food of India, with the purpose of raising awareness about forest conservation and tree planting. The festival serves several purposes, such as enhancing fruit production, creating protective barriers for farming, supplying livestock with fodder, and encouraging the preservation of the soil.
This celebration presents a significant opportunity to promote afforestation and engage in tree plantation drives, thus safeguarding and conserving existing forests. By joining hands and actively participating with dedicated communities, such as the Hosachiguru-managed farmlands, individuals can play a vital role in contributing to this crucial cause. Each person has the power to make a difference in combating climate change by planting, nurturing, and caring for trees.
At Hosachiguru, we are committed to growing and managing agro and food forests along with our 700+ co-farmers on 1000+ acres of managed farmlands around Bangalore. We take pride in the fact that we plant and manage 250+ trees per acre on behalf of our Co-farmers at Hosachiguru and manage the farmlands near Bangalore for decades together.
To help India achieve the benchmark of 33% forest cover, we all individuals need to think big and start out small by owning a piece of agricultural land and growing trees. If managing it is a concern, we invite you to join hands and become a co-farmer with Hosachiguru where you own the land and we manage it for you.
Plantation Drives and their Challenges
Plantation drives aim to grow large trees that sequester carbon and help the environment. However, many planted saplings die due to lack of care. To improve the chances of survival, it is important to take into account factors such as site location and species selection, correct planting methods, sufficient watering, ongoing maintenance, and active community participation. These measures will ensure the success of the drives and the long-term growth of carbon-sequestering trees.
Tree Plantation and Tree Care at Hosachiguru
At Hosachiguru, we prioritize the care and well-being of trees through various stages and steps. Here is an overview of our approach to tree maintenance:
- Watering: Adequate watering is crucial for the health of trees. We ensure that trees receive sufficient water based on their specific requirements. We monitor soil moisture levels and use techniques such as drip irrigation or sprinklers to provide the necessary hydration.
- Pruning: Regular pruning is essential for tree maintenance. We remove dead or diseased branches, shape the tree for optimal growth, and improve its structural integrity. Pruning also promotes airflow and sunlight penetration, reducing the risk of pests and diseases.
- Protection: We take measures to protect trees from potential threats such as pests, diseases, and extreme weather conditions. This may include using organic/natural pesticides, implementing physical barriers, or providing support structures during storms or heavy winds.
- Mulching: Mulching involves applying a layer of organic material around the base of the tree. This helps conserve moisture, suppresses weed growth, regulates soil temperature, and improves soil fertility.
- Compost Application: We enrich the soil around trees by applying compost. Compost provides essential nutrients, improves soil structure, and enhances microbial activity, promoting healthy tree growth.
- Fertigation: It is the process of applying fertilizers through irrigation systems. We carefully analyze the nutritional requirements of trees and deliver appropriate fertilizers in precise quantities through drip irrigation. This ensures the trees receive the necessary nutrients for optimal growth and productivity.
- Sprays: To protect trees from pests and diseases, we use targeted sprays. These sprays are chosen carefully, considering their efficacy, environmental impact, and safety for humans and other organisms. Our aim is to minimize chemical intervention and prioritize organic and sustainable alternatives whenever possible.
- Replanting: In cases where trees need to be replaced due to age, disease, or damage, we ensure proper replanting. We follow best practices for tree transplantation, including site selection, root ball preparation, and post-planting care to maximize the survival and growth of the new trees.
Through these comprehensive measures, we strive to provide the best care for trees, promoting their longevity, health, and ecological benefits.
The co-farmers at Hosachiguru are at the forefront of a noble initiative, tree plantations. They are not only securing their own lives and families towards food security but also spearheading a vision to achieve a 33% forest cover in our country. Together, we can actively contribute to sequestering carbon, increasing forest cover, and attaining this crucial target for India. By joining hands as co-farmers at Hosachiguru, you have the opportunity to transition from being an eco-enthusiast to an eco-warrior, playing a significant role in creating a healthier nation for generations to come. Take a pledge today to plant more trees by registering with us at the link below. By doing so, you will receive updates on plantation drives and community-driven green initiatives. Let’s celebrate Van Mahotsav by taking the first step towards greening our lives. Join us and be part of this transformative movement.