This post is about the trees for the ghetto some of you readers donated.
My hosting family have had this idea of making there neighbor Township/ghetto create something like planting olive trees. They have had this idea for a long time, two and a half years. It would be a longterm project together with the inhabitants, which can help bring the area up.
The plan is of growing olive trees all over. In gardens, along the streets, in between the roads. So I said let's do it. If it is a long term project then they need to start now. No time to waste. So I told you readers about this on Facebook and also people here in the nearby Cape Town and South Africa. We got a good price for 2 m high trees, 253 R per tree which is around 20 USD/tree. The trees can give fruit within a couple of years. </p>
We wanted to collected money for about 20 trees. But people, you readers, were so very generous and I am proud to say my mum and dad gave 10 of them. Searon which is seen on the first picture in this post helped planting and also gave seven trees. All in all we collected 35 trees. That is so great!
The olive branch has been a symbol for a very long time and not just for those in the Bible. In the fifth century BC the Greeks were already using it for a symbol of peace. In biblical accounts, extending an olive branch meant the ending of hostilities between two parties and signaled the end of the conflict. The United Nations flag contains an olive branch for this very purpose; to end all hostilities between waring nations or those facing confrontation but it’s also found on many of the nation’s symbols, like in the 1885 Great Seal of the United States. After the flood of Noah’s day, he first sent out a raven (Gen 8:6-7) but then Noah
“sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground. But the dove found no place to set her foot, and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and took her and brought her into the ark with him"
After a week, “again he sent forth the dove out of the ark. And the dove came back to him in the evening, and in the beak was a fresh olive branch. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth" (Gen 8:10-11). That was a sign of peace…God would later promise to never send another flood to destroy man and all the other creatures.
These first trees will be an experiment in which the organising people can see the progress of which speices grow best in the area.
The day before getting the trees we go and look at the sight. Hopetown is a non governement organisation. They started this house for free tutering, helping the kids, mostly in mathematics but also art one evening a week. We meet Stephano who is one of the founders.
They also have a carpentry class 5 days a week for free for three weeks now. It is mostly funded by Swiss private sponsors. </p>Today. As I go and pick up the first batch of trees I learn some more about the trees. The woman at the nursery tells me there are different speices for eating and making oil. </span></p></p></p>
Now this project is longterm and the thought is to make a comunity olive oil. People should not eat the fruit it is for the whole comunity. Other benefits are the lush change of green in the township. There is also a ground breaking connection between black and white and poor and rich. Anyway. So we get three kinds of trees. Coratina, Frantoio, Mission olives will be planted. The trees are bisexual which is a great sexuality, they can all love each other. So they can be planted randomly. But we need to keep track on which tree is from which family.
The round chump of dirt and roots should be planted in a square hole. This makes the route spread and not continue growing around. The plants need a lot of water the first weeks, 2x20 L every week. This is why we only plant three trees now. The others will be planted as soon as the rainy season starts in South Africa which is allready late this years.</span></span>
The planting will then continue as trees are donated until the comunity has about a thousand trees.
It will green the comunity and when there are enough threes the comunity can start a production of the olive oil. Another good thing about olive trees is the symbolism and relation to the bible. The locals are very religiously christians. So today we planted the first three trees in an alphabetic order from the street view, to know which one is which.</span></span>
Gareth from Round Table has a great idea of putting a small story on every tree. Telling about the project and also telling the comunity citizen how they can get there own tree for free to plant in the hood.