Proud to be a Rotaractor and proud to reblog this post.
It’s September and it’s International Coastal Clean-up Month
This year’s International Coastal Cleanup is slated on September 21, 2013. Asel Punzalan narrates his experience on ICC 2005 to encourage everybody to participate in the incoming cleanups.
September 17, 2005 (Saturday)
I was assigned to look over my co-San Pedro East Rotaractors regarding our participation in the 20th International Coastal Cleanup (ICC)- “Our future, Our Success.” The program would start at around 7:00 in the morning (this is according to a source) in Fishport, La Huerta, Parañaque City.
Given the authority, I told the company, “Ala-singko hanggang 5:30 sa Jolibee Alabang. Ang hindi sisipot, wag nang magpakita sa akin. Iiwanan na lang ang late!” and I did it with conviction. (Let’s meet in Jolibee Alabang, 5:00 to 5:30 AM. To those who won’t fulfill their promise, I don’t want to see your faces again.)
On that very important day (ICC), a familiar voice dumbfounded me from my…
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A must read article… Very funny and interesting at the same time.
Save yourself. Read this.
In the past week with a lot of negative posts to me by a couple of people who keep spamming my blog posts with terrible comments that are so negative, I thought I bring this topic up with why people torture themselves with negativity? I have taken out all that negativity in my life and I did not let it effect me, I stood up for myself and for my rights. It is a tough battlefield out there with negativity, and with cruel and insensitive people toward others. I am not letting those things bother me and torture myself with other peoples hate words. There is always a light at the end of the tunnel and I am happy with myself and who I am. People shouldn’t put themselves down, if you keep on being negative, and always saying I am not good enough for someone, somethings and I cannot…
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***ANYTHING & EVERYTHING
Minds are like parachutes – they only function when they are open. -Paulo Coelho
- The world does not revolve around you. You are just a speck in the microcosm, so don’t expect people to do things for you. You have to work hard to reach your goal; nobody is going to hand it to you. Be aware of what is going around you.
- The old lady next to you is someone else’s mom. Open the door or carry her bag and remember that someone else may be doing it for your mom, right this very moment.
- Real men wear aprons. The stove and washing machine does not recognize the hands that use them. Learn how to use both these appliances. It may save you from hunger and dirty clothes one of these days.
- You do not have a maid; learn to pick up your dirty clothes.
- When you make a promise, keep it. Your word of honor is something to be proud of.
- It’s alright to get mad but it is not right to use your fists to settle disagreements.
- Keep yourself clean, shower daily, trim your nails, and use your deodorant. Do not wear anything from the dirty laundry basket.
- It is okay to make a stand especially on issues that matter even when everyone else is silent. Know what these are.
- Treat girls as they are meant to be treated; they have brains as well as personality, not just bodies.
- There has never ever been a good reason enough for you to break up with a girl over the phone. Have the decency, and guts, to talk with her personally.
- Break up first before you get into another relationship. Remember you have cousins and you would not want any boy to treat them that way, too. Karma is a bitch.
- Real women do not look like Victoria Secret angels. Just take a look at your mom.
- Always keep a condom in your wallet; it can save your life.
- Don’t drink and drive. If you are drunk, never get behind the wheel.
- You are never too old to use the good manners you learned when you were young.
- You were taught table manners, use them.
- Peer pressure is something all of us have experienced. You will, too. Resisting the pressure and dare to be “man enough” to participate in something wrong will be difficult. The pull to be one with them is a temptation that will be hard to resist. Resisting though will make a man out of you and surrendering to such a “dare” is cowardice. Read #8.
- Texting while driving is a big no-no. SEXTING is a bigger offense.
- NEVER use the words gay and nigger in a derogatory manner. Respect people no matter what race, faith or preference, they are people just like you.
- Admitting your fault or mistake does not make you less of a man. So does showing your feelings.
- It would be so beautiful if you can and will always win but this is reality, learn to accept losing with grace.
- Enjoy life, in fact, live life to the fullest. Be happy and know that I am always here for you.
- And lastly, be the man that I believe you are. Always remember I love you.
La Mesa Watershed in Quezon City is the primary source of drinking water of about 12 million Metro Manila residents. The property is owned by the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), a government agency. La Mesa Watershed is 2700 hectares, 700 hectares of which is the reservoir and 2000 hectares of which is the surrounding forest. This forest is the last remaining one of its size in Metro Manila and serves as its carbon dioxide sink. La Mesa Watershed, therefore, is vital to the city, not only because it is a primary source of drinking water, but also because its forest functions as the lungs of Metro Manila, providing it with clean air.
Due to lack of funds, illegal settling, poaching and logging, La Mesa Watershed came into disrepair and ruin. In 1999, ABS-CBN Foundation, Inc. created Bantay Kalikasan (Nature Watch) and, in partnership with the MWSS, undertook the Save La Mesa Watershed Project. The project aimed to rehabilitate, reforest, preserve and protect La Mesa Watershed. The total area that needed reforestation was 1500 hectares. Today, eight years since the project started, only 158 hectares remain to be planted. Bantay Kalikasan’s strategy of actively involving the general public in the project, through its Adopt/Protect-ATree/ Hectare programs, was key to its success.
To sustain the Save La Mesa Watershed Project, Bantay Kalikasan, in partnership with the MWSS and the Q.C. Government, rehabilitated and renovated a 33 hectare public park located right outside the natural boundaries of the watershed and 40 meters below the reservoir. In September 2004, it was renamed La Mesa Ecopark and reopened to the public. All revenues generated by La Mesa Ecopark are utilized for the continuous preservation and protection of La Mesa Watershed.
La Mesa Ecopark envisions a better environment for our children. Our mission is to spread environmental awareness through education and advocacy. La Mesa Ecopark is a venue providing for healthful outdoor recreation and a true forest experience. It is a living classroom and laboratory for environmental education and aims to be a center for biodiversity conservation. In 2006, over 280 different schools from all over the country, some coming from as far as Laoag, Bohol and Cebu, trooped to La Mesa Ecopark for their educational school field trips. Today, the park continues to be a popular destination for family outings and picnics; a more healthful alternative to shopping malls.
At La Mesa Ecopark, each member of the family can enjoy varied outdoor activities. La Mesa Ecopark boasts of the following facilities:
Lopez Picnic Grounds – Five hectares of picnic spots with grilling facilities underneath a forest of varied trees.
Salt Water Swimming Pool – Probably the only salt water pool that is open to the public. Salt granules are used instead of chlorine making the water safer and less toxic.
Superferry Boating Lagoon – To experience and enjoy a paddle boat ride, one once had to trek all the way to Baguio’s Burnham Park to do so. Now this popular activity is available right here in Quezon City.
Fishing Lagoon – Fishing is another very popular to-do at the park.
Petron Fitness and Mountain Bike Trail – Here, one can enjoy a full-body workout under the shade of trees. The fitness trail has 17 exercise stations and connects to a forested 1.2 km mountain bike trail.
Shell Flower Terraces – Two hectares of flower terraces. This is actually the dam wall of the reservoir.
Ecomuseum – A museum dedicated to environmental education and biodiversity conservation.
Butterfly Trail and Hatchery – An educational walk through the wonderful, colorful world of butterflies.
Various pavilions for rent are available for private functions.
Overnight camping facilities also available.
Other facilities coming soon are:
Adventure Zone Team Building Facility
Come visit La Mesa Ecopark! Just by visiting, you are already actively participating in saving La Mesa Watershed. See you all at La Mesa Ecopark!
LA MESA ECOPARK MISSION
The primary purpose of La Mesa Ecopark is to provide opportunities for enjoying healthful outdoor recreation and to serve as outdoor classrooms for environmental education. In meeting these purposes, the conservation of the natural, scenic, aesthetic, and historical values of parks should be given first consideration. Stewardship responsibilities should be carried out in a way that protects the natural outdoor experience for the enjoyment of current and future generations. All revenues generated by La Mesa Ecopark are used for the continuous preservation and protection of the La Mesa Watershed, which is the primary source of drinking water of about 12 million Metro Manila residents.
Come hell or high water. As the old cliche goes, Typhoon Mina did not hinder San Pedro East Family to find its way to La Mesa Watershed. The inclusive Family was composed of Rotary Club of San Pedro East Rotarians and Rotaractors, a Spouse and a Kid. The event was the club’s first “A Day with my Family” Project for Rotary Year 2011-2012. The long and winding journey did not hamper the excitement of the delegates of San Pedro East. Heavy traffic brought by the heavy rain was aggravated by the massive road rehabilitation along the way and was intensified by the fact that it was a long four-day vacation. But through hooks and crooks, the courageous treeplanters made it to the destination.
Mr. Abelardo B. Angaldo Jr., the Head Forester briefed the participants of the essence of La Mesa Watershed’s existence and of the importance of sustaining the reservoir. According to him, La Mesa Watershed and the rest of its complex community plays four major roles. First, it acts as the carbon sink of the Metro. Although it only contributes to 3-5% pollution absorption rate, La Mesa makes wonders as the residents in the vicinity attest to the better local climate they are experiencing. The days are not too hot and the nights are still cold, they say. Second, La Mesa is a natural habitat of wild boars, deer, monkeys, snakes, lizards, birds and other fauna. Also, the rainforest is home to various species of endemic flora species. Third, La Mesa is a living laboratory. Several research studies, fora and symposiums are being done in this forest in the middle of the city. Fourth, La Mesa Ecopark serves as a recreational venue for family and corporate affairs, and that’s why San Pedro East keeps on coming back to La Mesa.
The San Pedro East Family donated additional twenty trees for a total of sixty trees since the team started its advocacy in RY 2008-2009. This year, ten trees were adopted by RCSPE while the other ten were espoused by RACSPE.
The Trees ‘R Us. After the briefing, the group went down to the main event- the tree planting. Another three foresters or “manggugubat” as they call themselves stepped into the limelight. They were Jose Pascual, Atanacio Sta. Cruz and Mar Zeri Ramirez. They taught the neophyte planters the proper way of planting trees. The experts started with preparing the soil media. Each bag of soil medium was composed of 70% topsoil, 20% organic fertilizer and 10% sand. Organic Fertilizer are being made in LaMesa itself. Dried leaves and other highly biodegradable wastes are broken down by cultured earthworms in Vermicompost pits.
This Is How We Do It. San Pedro East adopted twenty trees for this year but it did not mean that the team actually planted the same number of trees. And apparently, each tree did not necessarily cost Two Hundred Fifty Pesos (Php 250.00). The sum of the proceeds are being used to support the whole La Mesa. The group was able to plant approximately 200 seedlings of Cupang trees. Each seedling is planted first in a 3″x8″ black seedling bag and is transplanted in the forest after quite some time. The foresters showed the beginners the appropriate depth of the hole to where the roots of the tree would be inserted. Four factors affect the growth of the trees, they say. Vegetation, soil, water and temperature are interrelated as far as the survival of the tree is concerned.
The Earthy Worms. The foster parents of the newly-earthed trees had the chance to have an encounter with the “unearthly” kind- the earthworms. Eudrilus eugeniae, these worms are commonly over six inches long. They are good compost worms and are great for fishing because of their size and as they are lively on the hook and have a firm skin. They prefer temperatures of around 75ºF- 85ºF , but can tolerate 45ºF- 90ºF, cannot tolerate extreme cold and dislike disruption of environment and handling. Weight: 175 to 200 worms per pound. Its name in English is African Nightcrawlers. One forester showed the participants how such earthworms decompose the waste materials. Some girls were hesitant to even look at these creatures. But with persistent debriefing, most of the visitors felt at ease. Even one Rotakid dared to hold one worm.
The Day That Was. After the re-briefing, integration and awarding of Certificate of Adoption, the group went straight home for heavy rain was unbearable. Mr. Angaldo was very grateful to the foster parents and he assured that San Pedro East’s Advocacy will not be put in vain.
Having a green thumb is as easy as painting your thumb green. Yes, it’s true.
Now, why paint your thumb green?
Now, why have a green thumb?
Now, why plant?
Now, why plant trees and other plants?
Plants breathe in what the members of the Kingdom Animalia breathe out and the members of the Kingdom Plantae breathe out what the animals including us (yes, you are an animal) breathe in. Simply stated, plants breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen. We owe the plants for every breath we take. We must pay them for every sigh we make. Other wise, Mr. Global Warming will take his toll on us. And that is without any terms… without any condition.
Secondarily, plants give us food. We can directly eat them. If we wish, we can exchange them for money to buy meat and satisfy our cannibalistic nature or acquire earthly materials to gratify our ethereal soul. In short, plants give us means of living. Innovative uses of plants have recently broken through newspapers. That is another story.
Now, how can we have a green thumb?
People with green thumb are not born, they are trained. The instinct to love plants are already inherited but the traits and the skills are something we must learn.
The first thing we must be familiar with are the elements of earth, air, water and fire.
Earth. The soil. Different kinds of plant require different types of soil. Some strives in sand while some dwells in loam. Some prefers a combination. The amount of soil is also crucial. A farm necessitates a vast tract of land while indoors settle for a pot. Trees, of course need a lot, unless you really want a bonsai otherwise. For those who propagate plants for ornaments, you will be amazed how the color of the leaves change as the acidity of the soil changes.
Air. Aerial plants obviously love air while some whither and die if frequently visited by gusty wind. Some just need enough to breathe. If you are doing aeroponic gardening, that is another story.
Water. Certain types of plant need certain amount of water. Xerophytes like cacti can live with less while hydrophytes like water lily, quiapo and lotus love water. Mesophytes are neither xerophytes nor hydrophytes while phreatophytes have adapted that they grow large and long roots to sip water from the phreatic zone of the earth. Nowadays, phreatophytes are grown to purify contaminated underground water. That is another story. If you are doing hydroponic gardening, that is another story.
Fire. The sun. The temperature. The sunflower loves the sun while others hate it. If the plants wither and die under the sun, ceteris paribus, it is high time to put them into shade. It is a matter of trial and error.
Next. How do we plant?
There are two means of plant reproduction, the sexual and the asexual.
The sexual method takes into account the male and the female reproductive structures of the plant. A unisexual or imperfect flower is either functionally male or functionally female. Male flowers possess only androecium (stamens) structure while female ones have only gynoecium (carpels, ovary) parts. Bisexual or perfect flowers have both. Hermaphrodites have both from the beginning while others undergo sex-switching upon passage of time. The fertilization process in the ovary gives way to the production of seeds which in turn and in time are used for propagation.
Asexual propagation does not take seeds as requisite. Common methods are cutting, layering or marcotting, grafting, using stolons or runners and division using storage organs.
Cutting or striking is simply taking stems out of the parent plant and replanting it in another medium. Some tops are more appropriate to use while in some instances matured stems are preferred.
Layering or marcotting. In ground layering, flexible stems are pinned down to earth to give way to new roots and to eventually cut the stem off the parent plant. In air layering, matured stems are peeled and cast with light lump of medium. Roots will soon grow and the new plant will be replanted in new medium.
Grafting is often used in fruit-bearing trees like mangoes. In grafting, a matured scion with the desired trait is inserted or grafted into the often young stock. Grafting, per se is not a way of reproduction. It is used to improve the strain of the plant.
Strawberries are propagated using stolons or runners. Stolons are similar to normal stems except they produce adventitious roots at the nodes that run horizontally rather than vertically.
The head of the garlic or onion is composed of multiple bulbs. Bulbs are the storage organs of this kind of plant. Dividing or splitting them helps in fast reproduction. In case of ginger, rhizomes are used.
Post planting techniques. Once you see developing roots and once the plant takes hold of the earth, all we need to do is to monitor the elements- the soil, the air, the water and the sun. This time, another element enters the niche- the heart.
We must treat the plants in the same way we treat any other God-given creature. We must love Rose as much as we love Kitty. We must take care of Acacia as diligent as we pet Doggy. We must speak with Daisy as tender as we treat Baby. We can talk to our plants and recent research (Discovery Channel : Sex, Drugs, Plants) shows that they talk back to us. That is another story.