(Left photo): A participant presents the data on . (Right photo): The participants during the writeshop proper.

Around 14 regional staff from the country gathered on October 25-27, 2018 at Ramada Hotel, Manila to analyze and synthesize nationwide data and begin preparing their report on Indigenous Philippine Forest Tree Species.

Their report is an output of a six-year study titled “Germplasm Collection, Seed Production and Seed Banking of Superior Forest Trees and Development and Management of Database and Information System for Quality Planting Materials” under the Forest Ecosystem Resiliency and Sustainability Program of the ERDB. The study was conceived to primarily support the need for planting materials in the implementation of the National Greening Program (NGP) of the government pursuant to Executive Order No. 23. It aimed to ensure seed sources and supply of quality germplasm for planting stock production of priority forest tree species especially indigenous, endangered, and commercially valuable.

Set to this goal, the team had been working hard and scouring the different parts of the country for phenotypically superior Individual Plus Trees (IPTs) using the criteria for selection under the DAO 2010-11. Seeds were also collected for seed testing procedures and protocols.

According to Forester Romana A. Mauricio, study leader, key features of the report will include information on 167 Philippine forest tree species documented and verified; seeds of more than 129 forest tree species studied; and 50 protocols formulated. A database is also being developed to provide proper and accessible storage of information on Philippine forest tree species.

Seed Mosaic Art of participants from Biodiversity, Coastal, Wetlands, Ecotourism Research Center (BCWERC) (right photo) and Watershed and Water Resources Research Center (WWRRC) (left photo)

Aside from data reporting and writeshop, the participants also created the seed mosaic art using residual seeds from their collection. (Romana A. Mauricio and JMCalilung, FERD)