Philippine Native Plants Conservation Society Incorporated (PNPCSI) volunteers and board members in partnership with several NGO groups together with Winner Foundation conducted a FREE native tree guided tour within Arroceros Forest Park on April 13, 2019 ( Saturday).
Arroceros Forest Park located between the Metropolitan Theater, Quezon bridge and the Pasig River, is an urban forest that is home to over 1,500 trees. It considered as the “last lung” of the City of Manila.
We arrived at around past 6:00 am at the park and after few minutes saw fellow members Mr. David Ples, Bobby Zapata, Maam Menie Odulio ( president), Mr. Anthony Arbias, Ms. Irynn Alcantara Abano, Ms.Abigail Garrino, Mr. Ildefonso Bandoma Vista among others.
The group was divided into two group, One handled by Mr. Anthony Arbias and another one handled by Mr. David Ples between 20 to 35 participants per group.
Mature native trees such as Bagras (Eucalyptus deglupta aka Rainbow Eucalyptus), Bitaog (Callophyllum inophyllum), Narra (Pterocarpus indicus), Molave (Vitex parviflora) and Red Balete (Ficus concinna) thrive there while many other native species grow under the mature trees as saplings and young trees.
Mr. Howie Severino interviewed Ms. Chiqui Mabanta
The tour started at around past 8:30 am with Mr. Anthony Arvias leading the first group and followed shortly by Mr. David Ples. The group was followed by Mr. Howie Severino and crew of I-witness and we were able to identify at least a dozen native trees within the forest park.
After about an hour or so of walking around the park, the group had a souvenir group photo before they finish the tour.
There are food bazaars, artists booth, tree planting and a lot of outdoor activities at the park. I am glad to be back at the park, But there are several issues raised in this activity, One is the gradual lost of forest park, pollution, Manila bay reclamation and construction of a university gym within the premises. It seems that have a big building within the Mehan Garden formerly known as Jardin Botanico de Manila compound in not enough.
firefly group with author ( photo courtesy of Ms. Menie Odulio)
Ms. Gemma Cruz-Araneta together with Ms. Menie Odulio
Bid farewell to some members of the group and left past 10:30am on my way to the Manila Central Post office for the Royal Postal Heritage Tour.