Eco Restore, an organisation focused on landscape renewal, has nursed over One million shea and baobab seedlings to be grafted and distributed to farmers, particularly women, who will nurture them to grow.
The seedlings, which would be grafted with scions from locally superior shea trees, would be supplied to farmers next year for planting.
They were nursed in communities, including Walewale, Nakpaye, Fio and Chama in the North East Region.
The initiative formed part of efforts to restore indigenous trees that were going into extinction.
It is being undertaken under the Ghana Shea Landscape Emission Reductions Project (GSLERP), a project funded by the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and implemented by the Forestry Commission and the Global Shea Alliance, who provided technical support.
The United Nations Development Programme is the GCF Accredited Entity on the project.
GSLERP seeks to enhance forest carbon stocks across Ghana’s Northern Savanna Zone by addressing the alarming deforestation and forest degradation challenges across the zone.
Seedling nursing activities under GSLERP are implemented by Eco Restore in partnership with Bunge Loders Croklaan.
Dr Zakaria Issahaku, Co-Founder and a Director of Eco Restore, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said the move to restore indigenous trees began in 2019, where shea seedlings were nursed for farmers to plant.
He said, “The seedlings are not just nursed and handed to farmers. We monitor them when they are planted for up to three years to ascertain their sustainability.”
He indicated that GSLERP, while targeting to save the degraded landscape, also aimed at promoting investment in the shea value chain as well as to empower women.
Mr Osman Adam Wumbei, Project Manager at Eco Restore, said women were paid and monitored to oversee nurturing the seedlings in the various communities, adding it provided livelihood for the women.
He said the seedlings were planted thousands in a row and added that they were observed for months before grafting for supply.
He noted that farmers were sensitised on parkland vegetation prior to distributing grafted seedlings as well as given the necessary assistance during planting at no fee