guanábana – 4m preparation finalized transplanting fruit trees

After more than 4 month of preparations and planning, this week we have been transplanting about almost 1000 guanábana tropical fruit trees. The plants seem to really like this climate and the geology of step hills here. Wikipedia: It’s tolerant of poor soil and prefers lowland areas between the altitudes of 0 metres to 1200 metres. It cannot stand frost. So in a nutshell perfect for our location at the edge of the amazonas region in Ecuador.

Image: guanabana tropical fruit

You have probably never heard of a guanábana fruit yet. It grows in many parts of the world and is known by many names. In the US&A it’s called “Soursop”. In Spain it is known as “Graviola”, in Ecuador and many other Latin American countries it is known as la ‘Guanábana’ (Annona muricata).

The flavour of the guanábana fruit is delicious – literally like a combination of strawberry and pineapple with an underlying creamy flavor of coconut or banana. Nothing less complex.

Although its rind is quite bitter, the fruit’s flesh is soft, smooth and sweet, and provides healthy carbohydrates as its major nutrient. Guanábana also contains a significant amount of vitamin C and several B vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin and niacin, along with a high amount of alkaline forming calcium, an important mineral for bone health.

During the last 4 month we have been preparing this moment where we would finally transplant the Guanábana trees at finca PermaTree. Due to the fast growing pasture we had to clear cut the 3Ha all by hand before being able to make the specific measurements and then dig all of the holes for the plants. Then we found a high quality supplier for the needed amount of organic matter where we chose to mix two different types together. Every plant got about 1kg of organic matter. After one week of hard work among 7 we did it! Yeah.

New Natural Building Volunteer Structure

After having almost 95% finished the construction of our current PermaTree HQ bamboo house, we started with the next natural building project. Within 3 month we started living in our bamboo house so we improved step by step the construction. The first few month where a bit rough because we had almost no walls within the house and the roof had some issues with the rain 🙂 Now all got fixed.

The new PermaTree volunteer structure

Development Status (9th March 2017) of the base for the new natural structure for our volunteers at PermaTree in Ecuador. Construction material are local wood for the base structure. Top structure / walls and roof structure will be all in bamboo mostly guadua type bamboo which we have been drying here for the last 6 month. Some material need to be organized but most of it is ready and on location.

Also see inspiration for the color of the roof (blue), the roof design (tropical – lots of rain), first sketch of the structure on the white board and last but not least the floating hammock 🙂 Rock n Roll

As you know we have a new volunteer program at PermaTree because we deeply believe in collaboration. We do what we believe. Participation is experiential education; you are learning about permaculture and community by living in it. The most helpful, effective, and happy participants are self-motivated, interested, responsible, and accountable. Here we fully stress collaboration. We are about mutual enrichment and working together. There is no room for people who think they know everything.

Since things like finishing the new volunteer structure take time, ideally you will be able to commit to a 1 month or longer working alongside the PermaTree Volunteer Program. Our goal is to finish this structure before the end of 2017.

Here we see the volunteer structure with the additional parts for earth quake resistance!

Here we see the volunteer structure with the additional parts for earth quake resistance!

Btina standing in front of the bottom structure – better see the size.

Before and after photo of the volunteer structure base

Before and after photo. The main idea was to not change the landscape at all and “just” build on top of it.

Here is part of our inspiration for this project:

Inspiration: First sketch on the white board / idea Inspiration: Blue Roof Inspiration: Tropical Roof Design Inspiration: Floating Hammock with view

Tropical Fruits at PermaTree in Amazonas Region of Ecuador

Tropical Fruits at finca PermaTree at the edge of the amazonas region in Ecuador, South America. We are between the warm tropical / subtropical lowlands and the cool sierra region.

We are growing a extreme diverse mix of common tropical fruit with native species to Ecuador and Latin America, as well as many new varieties from the Asian continent with similar tropical climate. Our goal is to have food forest with a vast variety of tasty, healthy fruits.

Fruit Forest

Our goal with finca PermaTree here, is to grow all of the existing possible exotic fruits of the planet in one place. Just because we can. And maybe because we the humans are ending natural diversity and this is a growing future issue for the next generations of humans on the planet. We are not here to save the planet or whatever… The planet does not need us. WE need the planet earth.

All-ready harvesting tropical fruits from

  • Papaya  
    Papaya / Paw Paw – Carica papaya
  • Sapote
    Sapote – Nahuatl tzapotl
  • Guaba / Ice-cream-bean 
    Guaba (Ice cream bean) Inga edulis
  •  
    Maracuya – passiflora maliformis  (Passionfruit) Yellow skin

  • Granadilla – passiflora ligularis (Passionfruit) Orange skin
  •  
    Plátano (Plantain) Musa paradisiaca
  • Guineo / Banana  
    Guineo (Bananas)  Yellow / Reddish
  • Opening ripe Cacao pods 
    Cacao (Cocoa) Theobroma cacao

  • Caña de azúcar (Sugar cane) Saccharum officinarum

  • Guayaba (Guava) Psidium guajava

  • Naranjilla (Lulo) Solanum quitoense
  • Mango 
    Mango – Mangifera indica
  • Piña - Pineapple  
    Piña (Pineapple) Ananas comosus

 

 

 

Sooner or later to be harvested exotic fruits:

  • Guanabana / corazon-de-india / Soursop
    Guanábana (Soursop) Annona muricata
  • Coconut 
    Coco (Coconut) Cocos nucifera

  • Salak (Snake Fruit)
  •  
    Durian – Durio zibethinus
  •  
    Jackfruit (Jackfruit) Artocarpus heterophyllus
  •  
    Cherimoya (Custard Apple) Annona cherimoya
  • Fruti-Pan / Breadfruit
    Fruti Pan (Breadfruit) Artocarpus altilis
  •  
    Babaco (Mountain Papaya) Vasconcellea × heilbornii

  • Mangosteen – Garcinia mangostana
  • Noni / Morinda-citrifolia
    Noni – Morinda citrifolia
  • Carambola / Star-Fruit
    Carambola (Star fruit)
  • Pitahaya - Yellow Dragon Fruit  
    Pitahaya – Stenocereus/Hylocereus, (Dragon fruit)

  • Achotillo / Rambutan – Lychee
  • Borojo – Alibertia patinoi

Check out our fruit of Ecuador poster here on issuu or visual.ly

Healthy Tasty Food

The project PermaTree was mainly created because we – Btina and myself – wanted to eat healthy tasty food in our future. We at PermaTree focus on healthy nutrition aka healthy food “diet”.

Definition of diet: “A selection of nutritious substance that people or animals eat or drink, in order to maintain life and growth.”

It’s something many understand totally different. For some it’s about following a specific diet. For others it’s about losing weight. And for us it’s really and simply about eating tasty fresh healthy foods to gain energy and positive vibes. We embrace diverse nutrition with some exceptions due to current location limitations and because most of the fruit trees we have been planting will need between 2.5 and 8 years until we can harvest the fruits.

 

Most people think we at PermaTree are vegetarians because we do not eat or cook meat at home. The meat storage in our freezer is only for our for legged friends, our two dogs. Meat or overleft from cows which vendors do not sell to their customers. And to be honest the meat quality here in South America is not comparable with Europe. It’s more like a gum than a juicy piece of meat. So, if there is good meat around, sure we take the chance to eat meat once a time. But we are absolutely not dependent on meat. More important for us is, to know the source of where the food is coming from. Who is the producer and how is it treated, animals wise and also the entire growth process of a plant foods (organic VS GMO/hormone/chemicals).

What type of food do we eat at finca PermaTree?

A typical day involves a big bowl of seasonal tropical fruit (Banana, Papaya and maybe Mango) with oatmeal and fruit juice for breakfast. Lunch could be rice with peanut butter, salad and carrots, lentils with shredded coconut meat. Dinner may be lighter like Papaya or just some rice with eggs. We focus on seasonal, partly organic and local produce we purchase at the market and harvest as much of our own food from the Finca as we can.

So, for example plant wise speaking they need calcium too, which is most likely coming from bones. Meaning dead animals or dead human beings if you want so. And many people go and buy some fertilizer and do not know how it is made. So roughly said, the vegetables and fruit you eat have eaten bones to be able to grow big and juice! What do you think now? There is always something missing in this circle. As a circle example we get born, life and on on the end we are going back to earth where we decompose and create nutrient for plants or animals and so life is full of circles.

For us organic fruits, vegetables, grains creatively mixed together is what we are thankful after a hard working day. Most tropical fruits have so many health benefits we can’t even talk about it, because it would take more than just a dozen of blog articles. In a nutshell if it’s a natural organic fruit you can be sure it’s healthy, if it’s from the tropical climate it may be a so called superfruit and even more healthy. Why? Because those deemed “super” by nutrition scientists are packed with antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and minerals, and other nutrients that can help you live longer, look better, and even prevent disease.

Papaya Natural Fruit Juice - no sugar no milk

As soon as vendors use GMO/hormones for their animals or chemicals for their plants, it is most likely because they can sell it in very big amounts and therefore industrial food production. Better not to consume. Industrial food is just to make money not to sell nutrition. It’s about selling the least expensive food-material best packaged at the highest price. For profit. It’s all about the profit and the net gain and worth of the industry. Your health is not part of this equation.

 

Industrial production is NOT good for our environment, animals or even directly for us humans regarding our health! This is the most significant fact we have to keep in mind, more than following any diet in this world.

Which we, without hesitation, calling by there names: Paleo, Vegetarian, Vegan, Halal, Kosher, Low-fat, Raw-food, Gluten-free diet, Diabetic diet, Carbohydrate Diet, etc. These diets have to do with religion or a specific belief or just a current trend. 99% of all diets are also way to extreme at the end of the day. Also depending on your body type (Metabolism) how fast your body can burn energy, some diets may work for one person but not for another.

Amira preparing another Healthy Lunch Breakfast: Tropical Fruit Salad and Huevos revueltos Breakfast: Tropical Fruit Salad with Papaya

Our goal at PermaTree in Ecuador is to produce locally all of our food we consume there. Sounds like something obvious but it takes time to get there.

Others may want to, because they want to live healthier or lose weight. There is also currently a trend within athletes which are vegan and strong. Sounds good but most still do not care where food is coming from and if it contains chemicals or not…  Which we think is also a very significant detail.  

Healthy Food Recommend from PermaTree

  • Zero sugar “diet’ = more energy and just another addiction.
  • Cook all of the meals at home. If possible don’t eat outside, no control there.
  • Get the produce (vegetables & fruit) from nearby local markets or farms, always ask where it comes from you may be surprised by the answers from I dont have a clue to 3000km away.
  • Focus on consuming the good fats (Monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat) and not the bad fats (saturated fat and trans fat). Examples foods would be: nuts (coconut, almonds, cashews, peanuts, pecans) vegetable oils (olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil) peanut butter and almond butter avocado, salmon, herring, sardines, trout, walnuts and all kind of seeds (sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds).
  • Obviously – Don’t eat processed foods. anything in a packaging with a brand and
  • If possible eat raw vegetables, fruits, etc.
  • shiny slogans
  • Do you own research about food and listen to your body
  • Experiment new fresh food and mixes