Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Upcoming Buri Plantation.

The first time that I collected Buri seeds was when I was driving by Santo Tomas and Alaminos, Laguna. This palm tree that stood majestic from afar could be seen from a hundred meters away. It was months or weeks ago since I last drove by this area to investigate it's distinct crown with heavily laden fruits to check if it was already ripe for my picking.

Luckily, I was able to find someone who was willing to collect a bagful of rotten fruits with precious seeds within in exchange for a considerable amount of money. A few pieces up to a dozen would be fine, but no lesser than 500 up to a thousand seeds made me realize that I was a bit hoarding. I wasn't sure if I was going to be happy or sad. The easy part of collecting was done. Preparing for the real challenge of germinating hundreds of Buri seeds was the next step.

All I did was mix the seeds with moist soil and placed it inside a large plastic bag, sealed the bag and set it aside where sunlight would be able to reach it during the day. I was checking the seeds once in a while for weeks and months until I got tired and sort of glancing through the transparency of the plastic seem to get things done fast and effortless.

I thought that germinating the Buri seeds would take me a year, because it seemed that long a wait. Approximately, it took about 10 months of my tender loving care when I first noticed the first roots and shoots growing inside the plastic bag. Soon enough the plastic bag was full of young shoots eager to get out of their container. Putting them inside the bag was a breeze, but taking them out one by one carefully is like removing each strand of hair from their dreadlocks, as I can just imagine.

Of course, repotting bare root Buri seedlings is not an easy task either. One has to handle the seedlings carefully as delicate roots could easily get damaged. The arduous task of potting dozens to a hundred seedlings at a time will take hours to finish. Whew! I can remember all the hard work put in just to do that specific task.

3years, 1month and 5days after, since the first day that I acquired those seeds and they are now ready to be outplanted. Parting is such sweet sorrow so I have decided to keep them all to myself and take it a notch higher by establishing that future Buri plantation. Wish me luck!


Andrea said...

Rico, can you update us on this. I can imagine the vastness of your area as buri palms need big space each. I saw an area with lots of growing wild buri plants in Bohol. I didn't see any big palm already, maybe they already killed them, but there are lots of big seedlings, already difficult to ball. We have many of these when i was young but because people in our place normally make the big buri palm source of tuba, now it is difficult to find any palm there!

Rico said...

Andrea, I have planted dozens of Buri seedlings from previous years and they are doing well except for a few mortality. The bulk of my Buri seedlings has not been out-planted yet, because I am waiting for the rainy season to set in.

I hope that rains do come early this year.

Anonymous said...

sir,you are an inspiration...for a long time i have been dreaming of establishing a buri(buli in my dialect) plantation in my place (southern mindanao).i never got around to doing it.i now live here in the u.s.a.,but still i long to make my dream come true when i go home for good in 2 years time.....please continue to update your website as to the progress of your buri plantation...tnks at mabuhay ka !

Anonymous said...

Buri palm ( Buli in Visayan) is the source of three(3) very marketable raw materials for handicrafts - Buri , Raffia and Buntal. The Buri palm is also a very hardy plant that can survive in almost any soil and climate . Hence , it is a very ideal plant / tree for reforesting our badly eroded and unproductive mountainous areas .......and a good source of income for the mountain folks

Anonymous said...

Buri or Buli will survive even in infertile sloping soil. It is also very hardy and can withstand droughts and long dry spells . It should be encouraged by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources as a priority tree for reforestation together with bamboo ......the problem with Buri or Buli is the UNAVAILABILITY of planting materials ...

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