Can we grow forests and trees in degraded lands?
Can we grow forests and trees in degraded lands. Yes, of course, says Ketaki and Manasi of Oikos. Here is what Oikos has been doing.
Less populated rural areas have great potential for restoration; also, the source regions or catchments of rivers and streams.
Ecological restoration is bringing back the mature state of an ecosystem, with the help of techniques that would imply zero or minimum carbon footprint. Oikos has been restoring a piece of 24 acre in district Satara in Maharashtra. Thanks to owners who
happily agreed for ecological restoration of forest. Simple techniques like protection with the help of dry thorns, live hedge, loose boulder bunds, percolation ponds, stabilization of eroding soil, seed dispersal, plantation of native plants, etc. were carried
out in last 8 years.
And results are positive in terms of : Improved soil moisture, Temperature reduction of soil by 15 0 c, Change in flora from seasonal to perennial grasses, Development of safe sites for nesting of birds, Perennial food availability for micro consumers
like spiders and geckos,
Improved regenerating capacity of soil, Considerable drop in watering the saplings due to improved soil moisture, Continuous increase in biodiversity. All these results indicate better health of the ecosystem and progress towards mature ecosystem. Though
years to go…
Ecological restoration of degraded areas which are not used by human community for cultivation will ensure better ecological conditions for future.
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