New Tools, Fences, Fruits and goodness

Greetings Bona Fide friends and supporters,

I am updating you all from the city of Granada, in the midst of the national hipica, a horse/cow boy culture centered gathering that consists of beautiful horses with usually drunk riders prancing about in the street much to the adulation and joy of the rest of us. Hipicas are held all around the country and many are still extremely traditional and a true cultural experience. This one seems to be more like a beer commercial, but I digress.
The first foto featured is one that celebrates a 20 month process of building a home here amongst the place and people I came here 7 plus years ago to serve. Everything in the house has been done by hand and it has been a joy to work with the 3-5 men who have helped as well as dozens of others who have contributed in many other ways. It is going to be one heck of a house warming in August when we are done.
The gratuitous shot of new growth on an avocado celebrates the coming of the rains and honors the goodness of all things that grow green.
The two fotos below feature a new species of Theobroma that I found yesterday buying plants for BF and the community among others. It is related to cacao for sure, what it is exactly I am not sure. There are 5 species of Theobroma recognized in Nicaragua. Two of them I know well, the other three this one initially does not seem to be. Apart from this in the region I was in the fruit is well known, especially by the older generation. What I do know is I am am planting a lot of it in the nursery. This may be a rare sub-species or undescribed botanical gem. Quien Sabe?

For those of you who know our kitchen manager, Clemencia, well your lucky as she is one of our most valued staff members and friends. Clemencia is featured with scores and scores of suriname cherry/pitange/Eugenia uniflora. This fruiting shrub bears 2x yearly and this year we have scores of bushes fruiting, THOUSANDS of fruit, our biggest harvest EVER!!!

The group foto featured here shows our UVM agroforestry course with volunteers and local staff showing off our much valued and appreciated donation of a top of the line Japanese pole pruner with a 20′ extension, Felco loppers of two sizes for tree pruning, plus loads of replacement blades. This donation was made possible by Michael John Sullivan and his family. THANK YOU ALL VERY MUCH.

Last but not least. HUGE THANKS to Charlie and Vienel, a team of one US citizen and one local stone worker, working 5 days a week to finish the community fence for the BF community Center. Thanks you two. Big thanks to Charlie for spending a month of his university vacation wrestling concrete posts and big stones. Vienel you rock, congrats on your leadership on this project.

Thanks to all you all out there in the big WORLD,

Chris Shanks
Co-director Project Bona Fide

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