Plants Instead of Presents: A Gift for Nature

Rather than exchanging traditional Christmas gifts, we've opted to give back to nature by reforesting two woodland areas with approximately 500 trees.

If you are committed to sustainability, the best place to start is on your own doorstep. And so, for the second consecutive year, we've chosen to plant trees instead of offering presents. Since the end of November, there have been around 500 freshly planted oak and hornbeam trees in two sections of the Kappel-Grafenhausen municipal forest - planted by our employees under the professional guidance of the responsible foresters.

" This time of year again..." - This could be the beginning of this year's home forest story. But that would not do justice to our planting campaign, which we carried out as part of the Heimatwald project in the municipal forests on the Black Forest side of Kappel-Grafenhausen. After all, the challenges are always different. While in 2022 it was the steep slopes that caused us problems when planting on the Welschensteinacher Ignazhof, this late autumn it was the heavy rainfall. On the morning of our planting date, it was still pouring down like buckets - so even we, as rainwater professionals, were a little worried about whether we would be able to get through our daily program at all ...

Dry Ground

Thankfully, the rain ceased just in time, leaving the forest floor damp but navigable. However, although it had been raining all week, the ground was already bone-dry 10 centimetres below the surface. "The problem of drought is still a big one, which is why we are now increasingly relying on deep-rooted deciduous trees and mixed forests for new plantings," explained district manager Ronja Schneider to the 15 or so colleagues who had signed up for the planting mission. In addition, there are climatic fluctuations, which do not make things any easier for nature. "So this is also a form of water management that we are initiating here together through the planting," said the forester.

In the end, a total of 500 trees were planted, mainly oaks but also a few hornbeams. The aim of the campaign is to make the Black Forest as a whole more resilient by increasing biodiversity, creating new habitats for animals and plants and helping to ensure that even more trees can filter climate-damaging carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. These are plenty of good reasons for us at GRAF to get involved. The Heimatwald project was initiated by our agency team tietge.

Every Little Tree Counts

The fact that the big rain came again that day was not so bad. After all, it only rained for the very last few meters, when the majority of the group had already gathered for a final snack in the nearby Kappeler Hütte. Around the roaring stove, everyone quickly agreed that it would be a good idea to give nature a present for the festivities. And no matter how small the contribution is in relation to the bigger picture: "Every little tree counts," assured district manager Schneider and thanked her helpers for their energetic efforts.