Long ago, it was thought that the care and conservation of the territory by National Parks was enough. Climate change changed the paradigm and it is no longer enough for a park ranger to help restore the territory, but rather the production of native plants is required.
Given the increased interest of the Municipality of Bariloche in public trees and a growing social demand for native plants, the Nahuel Huapi National Park was proposed imitate the Victoria Island nursery model. Four months ago he launched the Native Plant on land belonging to the Military Mountain School in western Bariloche.
“It arose from the marked need to have an appropriate place to produce native plants”summarized the forester of the Nahuel Huapi park, Adolfo Moretti, who coordinates the project.
He explained that the production of plants on Victoria Island requires a complex operation since they must be transported by truck, then across the lake and again loaded into a truck to take them to the final destination. Therefore, the scale of production is limited. “It is not possible to produce that much for an operational reason. We had already been analyzing the problem of a place to produce plants and load them directly”, he added.
National Parks created the National Nursery Program with the intention of strengthening its nurseries to conserve their native flora and work on restoration. 14 greenhouses were purchased for 14 parks. One of them was the Nahuel Huapi that was faced four months ago in the west.
“From the outset we considered the need not to locate it on Isla Victoria in order to decentralize. For this reason, we signed an agreement with the Military Mountain School to establish it at kilometer 11 in Puerto Moreno. It is one hectare located in front of the Puerto Moreno Power Plant,” Moretti commented.
Its about public use trail that starts from the cave of Virgen de las Nieves to Puerto Moreno. “It is a fantastic place to produce plants because schools visit it, a lot of people walk by, there are spontaneous volunteers who help and we even work with the soldiers from the Mountain Military School. Knowing and caring for the environment is also a way of defense (not only with weapons but with biology)”, Moretti said.
The property already has a 6 by 10 meter greenhousewith a good irrigation system, which is made up of notros, myrtles, pañiles, ñires, coihues and “seven shirts” (escallonia).
Around the greenhouse, work began on the recovery of a pine forest. “There was an invasion of pine and broom and we began a strong control work. We are trying to remove the small invasive pines to be able to walk through that sector and recover that place for native plants such as lauras or radales”, he said.
The promoters of the Usina de Nativas promised to produce 10,000 plants per year. Of that total, some 2,000 will be delivered to the Army by agreement.
The Victoria Island nursery, on the other hand, produces between 3,000 and 4,000 plants per year. It was created in 1924, ten years before the creation of National Parks and is one step away from turning 100 years old. It was the first nursery in Argentina.
But it was abandoned for more than 20 years and started working again in 2009. Moretti explained that, until 1965, that nursery produced an enormous amount of exotic plants. “In 2005 I began the recovery work of that nursery. It had to be resignified with the paradigm of the time, that is, as a nursery for native plants. Today we know that we did well. Although today the scale of production is good, there are limitations due to the place”, he pointed out.