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Bahay Kubo Kahit Munti: Bahay Kubo @ Rueda’s one-hectare forest @ Quisao, Pililla, Rizal

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Greetings to ABANTE Readers, Philippines-wide: Mindanao, Visayas, Luzon: 7,107 Islands, 42,026 Barangays, 80 Provinces, 140 Cities, 1494 Municipalities; 100+ Million Filipinos, Families and Friends Earth-wide.

And this comes from the Rueda’s one-hectare ­forest in Masantol, Barak, Quisao, Pililla, Rizal, 60+ kilometers from Rizal Park, Manila.

In an initial meeting in the Coconut House, Quezon Circle regarding the promotion of Bahay Kubo farming technology for food production with the Economic Development Council composed of Renato Tom Gonzales, Delfin Walo, Jr., Dante Llave, Lani Gamboa together with Jun Castillo and Pepz Cunanan. The sharing revolved around the business prospects of a one-hectare coconut nursery and plantation: seeds, seedlings, and in joint ventures with landowners, farmers and investors and marketing.

Tom Gonzales extended an invitation for an ocular visit of the one-hectare lot located on the hill overlooking the Laguna de Bay which he planted with narra, mahogany, mabolo (kamagong), and bamboo in 2001. Together with Lani Gamboa and Pepz Cunanan, we took an early morning trip via Antipolo, Teresa, Morong, Baras, Tanay and finally Pililla.

The site of the mini-forest is through the paved and dirt roads with housing of settlers, upland ­farmers, and workers in the livestock: piggery and poultry farms. We were met by the Rueda’s forest caretaker: Alberto ‘Totoy’ Sibunga, 50 years old, and his parents: Juanito (86) and Erlinda (76). Aling Linda’s remark was “gutom at walang pagkain” and from their looks they were lean and malnourished.

The area is surrounded by piggery and the ­water wastes were flushed through the canal and creek passing along the boundaries of the land. And there were areas that served as water impounding area that collected the water wastes and rain.

The Rueda’s mini-forest has body-sized ­narra and mahogany trees which have been utilized for timber and lumber. And the main work of Alberto – Totoy has been to clear the area of grasses, weeds, and ­other growth. There were a few banana and taro (gabe) which were occasional food and sale.

A bahay kubo has been set up in the upper section of the forest to serve as  shelter for occasional visits and shed during the rainy season. And from the ­ocular view and assessment of the Rueda’s mini-­forest, the following observations and suggestions were shared and make it as a food source and producer:

1.    Save the Trees: Do not cut for logs, timber, and other wood products.

2.    Undergrowth of grass, weeds, shrubs, and other plants do not need to be cut and cleared.

3.    Grow V5: Venture in Variety of Vertical Vine Veggies side by side with the Trees. From the folksong “Bahay Kubo, kahit munti, ang halaman doon ay sari-sari…” 10 of the 18 are vines: … Singkamas, sigarilyas, sitaw, bataw, patani, kundol, patola, upo, kalabasa….

4.    Also, C5: Climber, Clinger, Crawler, Creeper Crops may also be grown with the Trees: Ube, tugee, passion, sayote, ampalaya, alugbate…

5.    UBE: may be grown using Dig-dig (Hukay-hukay) or using Sako technology (Sacks with enriched soil as planting medium).

6.    And for the water impounding areas grow ­variety of gabe, pandan, kangkong, and other water and shade-tolerant crops.

7.    Nursery: Coconut, langka, guyabano, sampalok, duhat, mangga, etc.

8.    Plant seven colored varieties of kamote for talbos harvested daily.. white, red, yellow, ­orange, violet, variegated…

9.    Build bahay kubo with live tree posts and tent for roofing.

For starters, we brought three ube seedlings which Alberto planted in sacks and placed along the trees in the frontage area. Other seeds were shared: kundol, patola, upo, sitaw, okra, kalabasa, bataw, patani, kadios, spinach, and also langka and duhat.

One-hectare forest may be small and yet Tom Gonzales envisions that  the Rueda’s mini-forest ­becomes a pilot, demonstration for  the conservation, protection, and propagation of flora and fauna and as a learning hub for the community: upland ­farmers, including kaingeros, women and youth as well as fishers and urban dwellers.

A trip to Pililla provides a view of the scenic and historic Laguna de Bay, the bamboo plantation and a visit to the Windmill Energy Generators… We encourage Abante readers to visit Pililla, Rizal… it is only 60 kilometers.

For inquiries, contact: Bahay Kubo Global ­System, Inc, Dr. Jose Pepito Manansala Cunanan, Phone: 0919 992 3630; 0927 700 1754; pepz2002@yahoo.com; pcunanan@gmail.com; Facebook: Jose Pepito Cunanan; Renato ‘Tom’ Gonzales  0956 763 9726 curoasia.scc16@gmail.com; Delfin Walo, Jr. 0917 351 6488/ 0923 612 1993 plasmajin8@yahoo.com; Dante Llave 0998 957 5940 dahn99m@gmail.com; Lani Gamboa 0922 623 4097; Jun Castillo 0928 504 6999

For more information, contact: Bahay Kubo Global System, Inc, Dr. Jose Pepito Manansala Cunanan, Phone: Smart 0919 992 3630; 0927 700 1754 pepz2002@yahoo.com; pcunanan@gmail.com; Facebook: Jose Pepito Cunanan; ­Emmanuel ­Argamosa 0908 881 9906 NetSquare, 3rd Avenue cor. 28th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig emargamosa@yahoo.com; Anselmo ‘Moi’ Garcia 0908 535 9645, moi.garcia@gmail.com; Dr. Venerando Catarroja 0999 501 6273 venerando.catarroja@yahoo.com; Dr. Mel Catarroja; Alonita Doctor nitesdr@gmail.com; nitesdr@yahoo.com; Marian Fernando, Tita Laraya, Limuel Alegario lalegario@yahoo.com, Mar Sajorda marsajorda@yahoo.com; Dan Ricohermoso  0908 216 5916 dan7riches@yahoo.com;

JUMSA Peace & Development Foundation Inc. & Jumsa Trading Corporation Inc. Princess Jum Unga Angel 0949 596 0803 Main Office: Lampaya, Talipao, Jolo, Sulu jumsafoundation@yahoo.com; Radzma Angel 0998 245 6631 www: jumsa.foundation.com; Mabolo, Pagrai 5, Antipolo, City;

Nature’s Thrive: Davao City: Maritess Campomanes Gacotano Alaba, 0907 995 1008 naturesthrive@gmail.com.

Tulay ng Buhay at Pagasa Foundation Inc.  Hanbi ICT Center, C-3, Navotas City, 02 351 2384, tulay@hanmail.net; Dyce Gonzales 0922 320 3513; Nestor Valfongo 0939 480 9419.

C3: Corinthian Coffee Clutch, Corinthian ­Plaza, Paseo de Roxas, Makati City:  Ike Seneres ­iseneres@yahoo.com; Elmer Robles kingflute@pop.network; Jose Z. Osias jzosias@gmail.com; Patrick Pineda pspineda13@gmail.com; Noel M. ­Argamosa emargamosa@gmail.com; Virgilio V. Leyretana, Sr.vley_martelli@yahoo.com; martelli_ri@yahoo.com; Noly G. Daculan nolyd@hotmail.com; noly.daculan@realistic.ph.
Jose Pepito Manansala Cunanan