Norma and Arie Hoogerbrugge, our nursery training recipients over 3 days, joined us at Ya’axché’s field station to learn about growing seedlings and climate-smart farming practices.
The training workshop was delivered by knowledgeable staff. The couple was introduced to Ya’axché Conservation Trust’s two main programs, the Protected Areas Management program and Community Outreach and Livelihoods program. Our parent organization has been working in the Maya Golden Landscape, its focal area of work, since 1998. Ya’axché has works closely with communities to protect over 151,000 acres of forest in the Maya Golden Landscape.
Arie and Norma were provided with a tour of our nursery where they saw firsthand the quality of seedlings being produced. They were impressed with our mist irrigation system and capabilities of produce over 50,000 native seedlings. Our team shared how to build and maintain a nursery for the production of quality, organic seedlings. Maintenance includes seed collection, record keeping, arrangement of seedling species, weed, pests and disease control, watering, grafting and composting. Our visitors learned Norma and Arie plan to produce their own seedlings in northern Belize.
Seedlings produced at Ya’axché’s nursery travel out of the Toledo district and some reach farms within the Maya Golden Landscape. The owners of these farms, where the seedlings are permanently planted, are beneficiaries of Ya’axché’s Community Outreach and Livelihoods program. Norma and Arie conversed with one of the farmers to understand the experiences the farmer has had implementing climate-smart farming practices, such as agroforestry – a farming technique that helps support livelihoods and protect forests within the MGL.
Norma and Arie’s customized training in nursery establishment and management benefitted them with unique information and experiences. EcoTourism Belize wishes the couple much success as they contribute to organic farming in northern Belize.