Thursday, 14 March 2019

Biology Class Tour

The members of Dover campus rainforest restoration group started off the month of March by giving a tour to a Higher Level Biology Class. We showed them around our nursery and allowed them to test their knowledge using an advanced version of our tree ID game. Students were given a guide and several clues to help identify the saplings placed on the table in front of them.

They also learnt more about forest  biodiversity and leaf morphology which could lay some important groundwork for their upcoming fieldwork in Tioman.

Friday, 18 January 2019

More Rainforest trees planted and adopted at Dover

Thanks to our great partnership with the UWCSEA Foundation, our tree adoption programme continues to see our community put down some roots at Dover Campus! This is a great way for new families, leavers and whole classes to share in this valuable conservation work and learn about the wonderful natural heritage of our region too.

Recent plantings have been around our Flood Retention Pond and are helping to make this the most biodiverse area on campus (in fact, probably the most biodiverse for miles around!), attracting a huge variety of bird and insect life.

Thanks to all generous donors. Whether you are 5 or 95 (both are featured in these pictures and many ages in between!) We will do our best to make sure your trees flourish as we hope your families do in Singapore and beyond.

A Moringa Oleifera for the whole family

K1s are keen reforesters! Our first Hopea ferrea  goes in.

And another Hopea ferrea for one of our alumni families

A young Rambutan (Nephelium lappaceum) was chosen for this multi-generational
and multi - continental family reunion.

Thursday, 22 November 2018

Dover tour for East

Last Monday (20th Nov), members of Dover campus gave a tour of our school to our friends over at East. We showed a few young Middle School students our campus and the locations of all our tree planting. However we couldn't directly go to many of the plants as the lightning alarm was on. They however still enjoyed the tour and found the quiz at the end challenging.

We also gave East a few tree samples which include the Moringa Oleifera and the Tampines tree. We couldn't however give them the Pink Mempat as we weren't allowed on to the tent plaza open area because of the lightning.

After we gave East the tour we let them do a quick quiz to test their knowledge-

Try and test out your knowledge below!

-This tree has oblong shaped leaves with pointed ends
Its leaves are very glossy green with highly textured (bumpy) surface                                        Its genus name means Food of the Gods (Think of names for God in other languages)

- This tree has very long pointed, narrow ends (drip tips)
Overtime its leaves change colour from pale red to light green
The trees species name refers to its Iron - like wood (think of chemical symbol for iron)

- The undersides of its large leaves are golden/bronze
Leaves arranged alternately
Hard stem
Famous Fruit Tree in Singapore (think of the shape of the Esplanade)

- This tree has heart shaped leaves with a drip tip
Its leaves are smooth and shiny/glossy when young but bumpy when mature
Leaves are arranged along stem in an alternate manner
Its species name means ‘large-leaved’

- This tree has small penny shaped very soft leaves
Leaves are Compound leafs (meaning split into smaller leaves like a clover) and have no tips
Opposite arrangement of leaves
Its seed pods are commonly known as drumsticks
Its nickname is the ‘Miracle’ tree and species name refers to the oil in its seeds.
We have two on the nursery about the 1.5 metres high.

- Each leave of this tree is made of smaller leaves (leaflets)
The individual leaflets are arranged in an alternate manner
Leaflets are slightly oblong
The tree produces small red bead like seeds

Monday, 22 October 2018

Rewilding with Friends of Rail Corridor

commemorative planting of Magnolia singapurensis

Last Saturday (October 20th), members of Rainforest Restoration Project from Dover campus participated in a tree planting event by NParks groups "Friends of Trees" and "Friends of Rail Corridor". The planting, which took place at Fuyong Interim Park, entailed planting several native trees* along Singapore's rail corridor. 

It was very exciting to plant and learn about so many new tree species. Many of the trees planted were rare to the island. One of the species, Magnolia singapurensis, is an endangered species of which -- until recently -- there was only one known tree in Singapore. 

The event kickstarted "rewilding" of the rail corridor. Over the next 3 years, Friends of Rail Corridor aims to plant trees along 4km of the 24km rail corridor stemming from the Hillview to Bukit Timah MRT stations.

After the planting, we were able to connect with other conservation organizations. It was inspiring and humbling to see so many individuals involved in biodiversity education and conservation. Among those individuals was Second minister of National Development, Mr. Desmond Lee (RRP's second encounter with a Singaporean celebrity!).
with Minister Desmond Lee

We are honored to have been involved in such a large and important project, and hope to be a part of many future plantings with NParks. Thank you to Friends of Rail Corridor for organizing the event!
with "Friends of Trees"

*Species Planted: 
Sindora wallichii
Palaquium obovatum
Strombosia javanica
Randermachera quadripinnata
Cratoxylum cochinchinense
Leea angulata (Thorny Tree Vine)
Bhesa paniculata
Sterculia rubiginosa
Sterculia macrophylla

Check out this article from Channel News Asia to learn more about the planting and Friends of Rail Corridor's rewilding project: 

Sunday, 2 September 2018

Reforestation with Friends of Chestnut Nature Park

Saturday morning saw members of RRP join in another reforestation session organised by the Friends of Chestnut Nature Park. This voluntary group was set up in collaboration with NParks to get more of the community involved in biodiversity conservation in Singapore's nature reserves and parks. RRP Leaders at UWC Dover, George and Naomi, had attended a previous session at the park in May, organised by local conservation legend N.Sivasothi . (aka "Otterman").

This time we were kindly invited by Dr Chua Siew Chin of NUS, who designed the day so her students from Ridge View Residential College could also carry out some community service work and hopefully be inspired to join in the future research and maintenance of the site.

Planting a Sandoricum Koetjape ("Lolly fruit tree")  - taller than expected!
Close to a hundred indigenous rainforest trees* were planted on this degraded site close to the car park. The planting design hopes to test the effects of using both leguminous trees and mulch to build up soil fertility to enhance growth. Quicker close of the canopy means less competition from weeds...and eventually less maintenance too.

George and Naomi planting at an earlier FOCNP event
It was a real privilege to work alongside all the other students and families. Chestnut Nature Park is lucky to have such good friends! We're very grateful to Dr. Chua for inviting us to be part of this project and for generously lending  RRP her expertise with seed collection and research in our own nurseries.
Thanks also to Nparks and contractors for kind help with some very large trees!

* Species planted included:

Koompassia malaccensis
Sandoricum koetjape (Lolly fruit tree)
Dyera costulata (chewing gum tree)
Parkia speciosa (petai bean tree)
Sindora wallichii
Elaeocarpus mastersii
Shorea Leprosula

RRP Planters: Wanhui, Naomi, Leah, Nathan.

Monday, 11 June 2018

A warm farewell to Dr. David Neidel

Our long time supporter and rainforest expert David Neidel has helped us tremendously for over five years on a lot of different areas of the project. David helped create the partnerships required to start a research project between both campuses, Singapore Botanic Gardens and Yale-NUS which was one of the most interesting undertakings this project has done and allowed us to learn the rigours of data collection and a lot more of the botanic science required for our work.

We would like to thank David Neidel especially for all of his amazing contributions to this project and helping to engage the student body through his informative presentations that were centered around reforestation techniques and the different factors that influence reforestation. David also helped us start our flourishing East campus nursery and contributed seeds and seedlings to project collected on his journeys in the region and Singapore. One of David's A Macaranga seedlings has just been planted at Dover Campus.

Due to his son graduating from East campus, David Neidel will be leaving Singapore for California. He will also be spending a lot of his time in the Philippines where he is set on continuing his restoration work. We look forward to when he comes back to visit and catching up.

The Rainforest Restoration Project wishes David and his family all the best!