IITA Director General attends farewell tree planting
Monday, 24 October 2011 00:00

A few days before retiring as Director General of IITA, Dr Peter Hartmann planted an iroko tree, donated by the IITA Forest Project. The choice of tree was apt for a man of stature, iroko (Milicia excelsa) being a sacred tree in Nigeria, both as a symbol of male strength and as the first tree created by God, from which souls come forth to the newborn. The event was attended by IITA Executive staff.

Dr Paula Bramel, Deputy Director General for Research, welcomed everyone and Deni Bown, coordinator of the IITA Forest Project, gave a speech in which she described the work of the Forest Project and thanked Dr Hartmann for supporting reforestation and encouraging the use of IITA’s natural resources for educational purposes.

planting of an iroko tree donated by IITA Forest Project

Dr Peter Hartmann, outgoing Director General of IITA, Dr Paula Bramel (left, outgoing Deputy Director General) and Mrs Deni Bown (right, IITA Forest Project) at the planting of an iroko tree


African whitewood (Triplochiton scleroxylon)

The African whitewood (Triplochiton scleroxylon), known as arere in Yoruba and obeche in Bini, is a large fast-growing tree, reaching 65 m (213 ft), usually with a straight trunk and buttresses up to about 8 m (26 ft) high. It belongs to the family Sterculiaceae and is common in semi-deciduous rainforests from Sierra Leone to Gabon and Congo, including secondary forests where it may fill gaps as a pioneer species.

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