La Union Coastal Planting for Typhoon Season

6 November 2021, San Juan, La Union.  On October 11, Severe Tropical Storm “Maring” (international name: Kompasu) was forecasted by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration is the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (PAGASA) agency as a Signal 1-2 tropical cyclone in La Union province. According to several residents, the storm lasted around 13 hours with continuous rainfall, strong winds and gustiness with coastal storm surges, leaving many parts of the province destroyed; and  many communities without homes, livestock, crops, running water, food, electricity and thus connectivity for several days after.

Laura Riavitz, Ocean Quest Global & FEED Ambassador

Not only the coastline but inland lost many native trees, so when FEED received sponsorship from Macquarie through Benevity, it was decided to allocate the funds to replant what was lost during the typhoon, and to donate native Philippine vegetable crops to farmers in various parts of La Union –  through the coordination of several local community residents including FEED Ambassadors Tina Antonio, Laura Riavitz and Celso Jucutan. The trees were effective wind breakers and have helped in lessening the impact of strong winds caused by the typhoon. However, due to this a lot of the trees were among the first casualties of the typhoon

Celso Jucutan (in white), DMMMSU Lecturer (Environmental Science) & FEED Ambassador

Special thanks to Celso Jucutan of Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University/DMMMSU for sourcing the community propagated seedlings. Celso is a College instructor on environmental science and has work  with FEED since nearly 2016, becoming FEED Ambassador.

20 native Talisay* trees were planted in different areas along the coast of Barangay Urbiztondo, San Juan.  Coastal trees are essential for natural protection of storms and big waves, they provide shade and strengthen resilience against climate change challenges, including storm surges, pollution control, ecosystem habitats for young crustaceans and control against soil erosion, amongst other benefits.

Tina Antonio, SJRHASS President & FEED Ambassador

Thank you also to San Juan Resort Restaurant and Hotel Association/SJRRHASS for adopting our trees and Jongky Surf School helping to source the perfect locations and planting the Talisay* trees.

Photo Gallery

*Talisay Tree: Tropical Almond (or Umbrella) Tree“Known in the Philippines as “talisay”, the Tropical Almond Tree (Terminalia catappa) is a large, deciduous, and spreading tree, reaching around 20 to 25 meters height. Belonging to Combretaceae (leadwood tree) family, it grows mainly in the tropics especially along sandy seashores for shade, ornamental purposes, and edible nuts.

It has shiny and ovate leaves, 10-25 cm long, and tapering below to a narrow and heart-shaped base with an expanded rounded apex. Studies have indicated that the leaves of “talisay” are rich in tannins and a host of organic compounds that help in conditioning the culture water resulting in improved survival, growth, and health of cultured aquatic species. Its leaves and bark have a wide range of medicinal uses, including diaphoretic, anti-indigestion, and anti-dysentery.”  (Source:

Climate extremities are forecast to worsen in the coming decade if greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated. La Union and surrounding residents had only just recovered from Typhoon Ulysses which struck in early November.

Hopefully with this planting we were able to strengthen the coast, build more resilience towards the climate crises and set an example that keeping and restoring trees is the best way to stay naturally protected. No artificial structure can create what nature evolved over centures – it is time to return Mother Nature’s blessings.

About FEED’s Ridge to REEForestation Programs

FEED’s Climate Change Action Programs are community-based planting interventions ranging from:

  • Watersheds: Upland agroforestry sites (protected rainforests managed by Bantay Gubat/Forest Guardians/Jungle Warriors, etc); to
  • Mid-land: food forests (for public schools and remote areas far from market-access roads); and
  • Sea & Coastal Protection Areas: Lowland mangrove and coral plantings (in coastal areas with trained Bantay Dagat/Fisheries Cooperatives/La Union Surf Club, Inc., etc.).

Ridge to Reef programs endorse the management of waters from source to sea; “healthy and well-managed river basins and coastal areas where people and nature thrive, is the vision behind the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) initiative”.

In 2015, the Philippine government submitted to the United Nations the country’s commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The country committed to reduce its carbon emissions by 70 percent by 2030. The carbon dioxide reductions will come from the sectors of energy, transport, waste, forestry and industry.Join us! Help us reverse the Earth’s “hothouse climate” tipping point.

Mother Nature is Speaking – Here’s what she would say.

Tree-Planting with FEED

Contact us at FEED for more details, to join our regular activities or to design your own tree-nurturing event: or call/text +63 (0)917 552 4722.

Tree-Planting with FEED:

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