Sustainable Forestry Projects
Homtini Foresters and woodmill, situated at Pachamama, promotes sustainable living through a holistic, symbiotic program that works at the interface of sustainable forest management, rehabilitation, education and holistic well-being.
Homtini Foresters is a self-sufficient ecologically attentive mill that processes alien invasive trees on the border of the Garden Route National Park.
Where trees are extracted, they are replaced with indigenous trees sensitive to the region, and/or non-invasive fruit trees which form part of a ‘food-forest’ permaculture process for the Pachamama community.
The sawmill operation has been making good progress, establishing infrastructure to process non-indigenous vegetation such as pine into timber. This timber is a valuable building material for future construction on the land.
Construction of a ramp and pulley system is underway, increasing our capacity to mill larger pieces of timber.
The forest management includes the clearing of invasive vegetation, harvesting timber, and opening space for natural regeneration or assisted natural regeneration (strategic reforestation to accelerate natural regeneration) in areas that would otherwise be slow to regenerate
Various large, invasive Eucalyptus trees have been felled to prepare for a future food forest (Zone 2) area. The large logs were dragged by the tractor to the sawmill for milling, other branches were removed and organised used for lining pathways and chipping- so as to be turned into compost. We were very grateful to have a men’s weekend here and their hard work was greatly appreciated in this area!
Ecologically, clearing these “thirsty” trees will have a big impact on soil fertility and water holding capacity of the land.
Post fire: many Pines in the area affected by the fire last year have also been cleared and milled, creating space for some of the two thousand funded indigenous trees to be planted next year, and yielding a valuable resource in the timber, to be milled by Homtini Foresters, and turned into a versatile material for building or carpentry projects, such as the Pachamama Peace marimba Project.
We are also very pleased to receive some funding through the Pachamama Forest Restoration Project to assist us in our forest management efforts. This has been used to invest in an additional chainsaw, increasing the rate at which we can clear invasive vegetation. Looking forward we would like to invest in appropriate health and safety training for chainsaw operators in the team.