when seed is gathered from mature specimens, known as Mother
Trees. These are
tress that have been allowed to grow to their full height
and are over 30 years old. The seeds are gathered in the tree
tops and then brought back to the nursery to begin their life
of being nurtured to grow into mature trees.
the young Pulai trees are able to stand alone. The farmer continues
to have an incentive to protect the trees as he will benefit
from a share of their value on maturity. As the People's Forestry
project is in its early days, Pulai trees from gardens, derelict
rubber plantations are also sought out and farmers paid for
a tree that up to now had no economic value to them.
are then inserted into the slats, joined together and then the
pencils cut to shape, foil blocking and varnishing. Erasers
may also be inserted.
a unique co-operative
arrangement between the forestry
and local farmers, local landowners are given seedlings and
money in exchange for clearing scrub-land within their existing
landholdings and paid an income to tend the baby trees. As a
native forest tree, Pulai needs to grow in the shade of other
species, so farmers are helped to plant coffee and other crops
to shade the young trees. This gives the community a welcome
additional source of income to fund development.
is now ready to leave the Forest
Mill to begin its journey into Pencil Slats. The logged Pulai
is transported to the sawmill by rail or cart where it is rough
sawn into pieces. These pieces are transported to the pencil
slat factory for milling into pencil slats, followed by impregnation
with waxes and drying.