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Our Nursery

sieving sandSetting up a high quality nursery of native forest plants was one of the first things we did when starting out, and it remains the very heart of our greening work.

Each year we raise tens of thousands of saplings, from over 100 indigenous species. Many of these plants go directly to the slopes of Arunachala, but we also give free trees to any local schools that request them. The local Forest Department value the quality and diversity of the plants, and are regular visitors to the nursery, as are various local NGO's and private gardeners. One of the functions of the nursery is to give native plants back their rightful place in home gardens, where they can bring in wildlife and reduce water usage. Medicinal plants are also raised, which can be planted in a kitchen garden and used for a variety of common ailments.

The work of the nursery team includes seed collection, preparation and germination of the seeds, and care for the young plants until they are ready for planting.

saplingsCollecting our own seeds increases our understanding of the favored conditions of a species, and our feeling for the forests that we are trying to re-grow. Learning how to germinate the many different species, watching the different ways they grow, it all serves to deepen our understanding of and empathy with the plants, and ensures that we plant out healthy young trees, grown with care and without toxic chemicals.