Trees for Life - Mapping Mahogany
“Trees for Life” is a model where Project GreenHands promotes agro-forestry plantation among farmers. Under this initiative, PGH provides tree saplings of around 18 different species that are of ecological and economic benefit to farmers. Ideally, a farmer who operates on one acre of land can easily plant 100 trees in a single line along the periphery of his farm land.
Last week, when we discussed what a popular choice Teak was with farmers, we’d promised to share why Project GreenHands promotes Mahogany over Teak.
The main reason is that Mahogany is a straight growing tree with less branches compared to Teak. So if a farmer plants Mahogany trees in the periphery of his farmland, there is no disturbance to the main crop that he is cultivating. Besides, Mahogany leaves are easily degradable whereas Teak leaves take a longer time to decompose and become one with the soil. So for the soil to be rich in micronutrients, it is best to plant Mahogany.
Mahogany grows throughout Africa, Asia and South America, and can grow as high as 200 feet tall. Apart from Teak, the tree species that is most preferred by farmers in PGH is Mahogany (Swietenia mahagoni).
Mahogany is one of the most versatile of all hardwoods and is used in some of the most elegant woodworking designs. The wood has a reddish-brown color, which darkens over time and displays a reddish sheen when polished. It has excellent workability and is very durable. This timber has been used since prehistoric times by Native Americans. From the mid-18th century, most first-quality furniture was made from this wood.
Did you know that Mahogany is used in boat construction? It resists wood rot, making it an ideal choice to build ships and boats. It is also often used for musical instruments, particularly the backs, sides and necks of acoustic guitars and drums shells because of its ability to produce a deep, warm tone compared to other woods. So the next time you see a piece of furniture, look closer... it could be Mahogany!
To support planting trees, log on to giveisha.org/pgh