Posts tagged Cielo Lodge
The foundation for the main building has been dug / Se han excavado los huecos del edificio principal.

The dry season is here so we should see a lot of progress in many areas.

A Series of 5 Waterfalls, With a 300 Foot Drop

There are 5 waterfalls on our property - visible from Google Earth -  that result in a 300 foot drop.  We've known about these falls for awhile but we weren't able to get to them.  The terrain was too rugged and steep.

A few months ago, our caretakers uncovered an old logging trail, and we were able to use that to finally see the mystery falls.  Three of the falls have welcoming pools for swimming.

Here are a few pics and a video, plus the falls marked on Google Earth

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Eradicating El Helecho and Restoring a Jungle

Certain areas of our property were chopped around 50 years ago, and the jungle never restored itself.  What grew is this invasive fern - helecho - Pteridium Arachnoideum.  This fern doesn't let anything take root.  It covers the soil and grows into the trees.  So it drowns the surrounding forest.

Our caretakers have been clearing the fern.  For months now.  

It is hard, hot, laborious work.  They're doing it by hand with machetes.  But slowly we are eradicating the fern.  Much of the buildable parts of our property look bald now, like the area in the foreground of this picture.

But last September, to replace the ferns, we started planting - native hardwoods, fruit trees - anything we could get our hands on -  to eliminate the danger of erosion and to attract the animals.  

And this rainy season we have started planting again.

We've already planted about 500 trees - guayaba, manzana de agua, guaypinol, zoto caballo, mamon, almendro for the parrots and macaws, mango, banana, cecropia, different types of palms...we think that by the time we are finished we will plant 1500 trees.

We also hope to restore the jungle floor, with the seedlings of broadleaf plants that are in abundance on our property.  

It is a huge effort, but a gratifying one.

A huge shout out to ICE, Costa Rica's electric company.  They give away native hardwood trees to anyone who asks.  Their goal is to plant over 1,000,000 trees across the country.  They have given us about 200 native hardwoods which we planted last rainy season.   We will try to get more for this season.

 

Breathing More Easily

Ahhhhh...we can breathe.  We just received the D-1 Setena permit.  As our architects said, it's the Golden Ticket.  All of the other permits will now be easy to get. 

There are now more steps - for example, we need to get the permits from the Municipality - but they are supportive of our project and we think that process will be pretty quick. 

We'll be breaking ground soon.