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Restoring baobab populations in Madagascar
Written by Julie Razafimanahaka   
Monday, 22 April 2013 09:57

Six of the nine species of baobabs in the world are endemic to Madagascar. Three of them are Endangered according to the IUCN Red List: Grandidier's baobab (Adansonia grandidieri), Perrier's baobab (A. perrieri) and the Diego baobab (A. suarezensis). The first is only found in the western part of Madagascar while the latter two are endemic to the northern tip of the country. Together, they are threatened by low recruitment in the wild. To mitigate this threat, we initiated a program to restore the baobab population in western and northern Madagascar.



September 2012:

We held a meeting with all stakeholders in Morondava to decide where the baobabs should be planted.

November 2012:

264 seedlings of A. grandidieri were planted by 264 children at four primary schools in Mahabo district.

December 2012:

A first monitoring was carried out. The tallest baobab was 46 cm high (planted by pupils from EPP Soatanà). We had to replace 79 seedlings: 8/86 in Mihary, 24/64 in Soatanà, 4/31 in Soamahavelo and 43/80 in Anjatelo. Kids were very proud of their trees.

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January and February 2013:

Teachers and pupils from Mihary and Soamahavelo measured their trees. The height varied from 3.5 to 58 cm.

March 2013:

Representatives of the Ministry of Education in Mahabo (CISCO) and the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (CEF) together with a member of MadagasikaraVoakajy noted the growth of each tree and how well they were looked after. The tallest tree was observed in Mihary with 95 cm high. To protect it from goats and other predators, Bienvenu surrounded his baobab tree with spiny branches of jujube. Now, he will have to protect his tree from the jealousy of other children too!!!

This is not a joke:

In Soatanà (literally meaning nice village), one child whose baobab had been replaced in December was upset when it also died so in February, he replaced it with a mango tree which is now growing well!

Children are smart:

Another child fromMihary planted a seed of baobab in place of the seedling that died. Her baobab is now 40 cm high.


On your way to Morondava, you can stop in Mahabo and ask for directions to Soatanà or Soamahavelo. Anjatelo and Miharyare on the RN 34. Anjatelo is located in 6km before reaching Mahabo from Ankilizato and Mihary is in the opposite side (after Mahabo) . Look out for the sign on your left, you cannot miss it. Visit the baobabs, meet the children, and tell us what you think!

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February 2012:

We discussed with stakeholders the feasibility of planting baobabs in the Region

November 2012:

Communities from the village of Ambodimanary set up the Diego baobab nursery in Andranomanitra. Members of the community agree to collect seeds from the wild and Mr Jaovita Paulin will look after the nursery.

February 2013:

2500 seeds were collected and potted-up and at the end of the month. Some seedlings have reached 10 cm high.

March 2013:

2,500 seedlings are now growing in Andranomanitra nursery.


In November 2013, 2000 seedlings will be planted in Ambodimanary by local communities to restore the deforestedarea in Montagne des Français. 100 will be planted in Irodo near the special reserve of Analamerana. 100 seedlings will be planted in the town of Diego (public garden, new football stadium, etc.) and 100 seedlings for Antanamitarana Commune, on the way to the airport of Antsiranana. 200 seedlings will be used by Regional Direction of the Ministry of Environment and Forest in Diego (DREF DIANA) for the next reforestation campaign.

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February 2013:

Daudet Andriafidison, Community and Conservation Programme Manager at Madagasikara Voakajy, took a fruit of Diego baobab to our office in Antananarivo.

March 19, 2013:

He planted the 40 seeds in our garden.

March 31, 2013:

18 seeds were germinating. Follow monthly update on the growth of these trees on our facebook page. 

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