Going green: Purchasing and planting tree seedlings in Kenya

As part of Wildlife Works’ reforestation efforts, our greenhouse team regularly purchase and replant tree seedlings from around our project area in rural Kenya. The greenhouse staff travel to communities around our Wildlife Sanctuary in Rukinga to purchase the seedlings from local farmers at Ksh10 per plant, providing a source of income for some community members who can not find stable work.

The greenhouse at Wildlife Works

After the seedlings are purchased, they are kept at the Wildlife Works greenhouse, nourished and prepared for replanting. Once the seedlings are ready, the team distributes them for free to local schools, churches, environmental groups and individuals for planting.

On November 23, the greenhouse team hired a canter, which is a kind of cart used for hauling goods, to assist them in transporting the purchased plants. The team would need to buy at least 50,000 saplings in order to thoroughly distribute them to the community.

A young girl carrying seedlings to sell to the greenhouse

The first location the greenhouse team visited was Kasigau, where the staff visited the home of Mzee (meaning “elder”) Coller, a married man with three school-aged children. While his children attend boarding school, Coller and his wife live in a small, unfinished hut. Without a stable job providing them with money for upkeep or sustenance, the couple rely on growing seedlings for money which provides them with two meals per day and covers the school fees for their children.

Once the greenhouse team arrived on the farm, Coller directed them to where he kept his seedlings. The team members were surprised and thrilled to find over 2,000 tree seedlings at his greenhouse! Coller said he was very happy for what Wildlife Works does for the community, and with the money he earned Coller can finally finish building his house.

Mzee Coller at his small greenhouse

The team continued to travel to different local farms within Kasigau and purchased anywhere from 1,000 to 2,000 seedlings from each.

Purchasing tree seedlings

Next the team traveled to the town of Marungu, where the greenhouse staff met a farmer named Gradon Mswahili who also relies on money from the seedling program for sustenance. Through the sale of tree seedlings, Mswahili said he can afford to educate his three children, who are currently in secondary school, up to a tertiary level. Mswahili sold 8,000 seedlings, the highest amount any farmer has sold to the greenhouse team, and says that he is overwhelmed by what Wildlife Works is doing.

Wildlife Works greenhouse team members packing seedlings onto a canter

The last location in the greenhouse teams travels was Sagalla, and after five long days of work the total number of seedlings collected was 57,500 with a 90% species diversity.

The money from the purchase of tree seedling will benefit community members who otherwise could not afford to pay their children’s school fees or provide sustenance for their families. The saplings themselves will go toward reforestation efforts in an attempt to reclaim the once vibrant ecosystem of rural Kenya. The greenhouse staff members are continuing to spread a little green around the community… in more way than one!

16 Replies to “Going green: Purchasing and planting tree seedlings in Kenya”

  1. Kindly confirm the cost of one tree seedling. I would like to buy (through donations to Wildlife Works), bulk tree seedlings on a monthly basis. I look forward to hearing from you.

  2. I have approximate of 15,000 seedlings in Kabartonjo,Baringo county of and eculaptus grandis,you may contact 075548745.you may buy for the community there.

  3. Hi I come from Mumias in Kakamega county am running a CBO called The People Against Poverty in the World ( PAPOW ) we do Environment among other programs , we need Trees to plant in primary schools and funds to train pupils on the importance of trees.check our website at: http://www.papow.webs.com. I expect over 100000 seedlings to plant in 50 Pri. schools in Kakamega County . starting on Aug. 2- 2014. Anyone interested you are most welcome if you have any links and leads we will appreciate. please share our story

  4. Hi there, I congratulate you on the very noble work you doing on saving the wildlife through tree planting and the other activities of rural community services, I would like to partner with you and get your advice and help on how to do community outreach on the benefit of tree planting on the environment, I’m in the process of planting the drought resisting tree like Jojoba and similar trees in an area of five hundred hectar of land between the two rivers of Jubba and Shabelle in Somalia, your help is appreciated. Thanks!

  5. I have many tree seedlings both exotic and indigenous, I’m based in Nyeri town and I’m looking for someone to buy them,they include Eucalyptus saligna and Eucalyptus glandis, pinus patula, acacia, grevillea and many others. Please call me on 0722 269 987 if you need any. my company is called Potters Greenland ltd. thank you.

  6. As a group we have over 150,000 seedlings both exotic and indigenous trees which are enviroment friendly .
    we are selling 10/-
    call 0702346753

  7. hi I lyk what UA doing. I come from kilungu ,makueni county .I have ,over,2000 whispering pine tree seedling am selling each at ksh,10 .my contact is 0700306390..

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