Friday, 20 April 2012

Africa Environment Day is Renamed Wangari Maathai Day

Africa Environment  Day is celebrated every of 3rd March since the year 2000.The day was set aside to raise awareness of the pressing environmental challenges facing the continent. During the African Union Summit held in Addis Ababa Ethiopia in February 2012, the African Union chose to honour the late professor wangari maathai by renaming Africa Environment Day Wangari Maathai Day, for her great contribution to environmental awareness in Africa especially in aforestation and reforestation.Great contribution was made by the late professor Wangari Maathai. Professor Wangari Mathai fought several battles with wisdom and diplomacy to save the environment. This made her a winner of the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize which was awarded her in Oslo Norway in Dec 2004.She has left a legacy which will outlive her and the battle continuous.

Agroforestry, farm forestry, community forestry, social forestry and village forestry are all terms used to describe growing of trees undertaken mainly outside gazetted forest zones. Agro-forestry has received much attention in the development efforts of rural Kenya over the years. Tree planting projects have been supported by government extension services as well as well as non governmental organizations. Increasing the tree cover from about 2% to 10% is the government policy in Kenya. However lack of seeds has often led to poor achievements in tree planting as the supply from central seeds stores is unreliable. Local seed collection is the answer to ensuring timely supplies of seeds, furthermore indigenous tree are adapted local area conditions. It is very easy to collect seed for on farm small nurseries. Simply observe the flowering and fruiting of various tree species to know when mature seeds are available. This varies from species to species and from one part of Kenya to the other.

Collect only mature seeds for good germination percentage and from trees that resemble what you want i.e. species for timber from straight trees, species for fodder from trees with high production of leafy biomass and species for fruit from good tasting and high yielding trees. Collect seed which has not been attacked by insect or fungi.Extract collected seeds from pods, cones or fruit and allow drying. Seeds which are oily or soft are recommended to be sown immediately and should not be stored ,while those with a hard cover may usually be stored. When storing keep the seed clean, cool, dry and protected from insects and rats. Label containers with name of the species and Date of collection. As Professor wangari maathai said “It’s the little things that citizens do which makes the difference and she quote “My little thing is planting trees” That one “little” thing led Wangari Maathai, who 
died September 25th 2011, to found a movement by name the green belt movement, that not only planted over 47 million trees worldwide, including re-foresting her native country Kenya, but had improved the lives of over 900,000 women through economic empowerment by the year 2011.