THE CULTIVATION AND UTILIZATION
OF THE EUCALYPT IN THE PERUVIAN
SIERRA AND THE INDUSTRIAL TRIANGLE
JOSHUA CLIFTON DICKINSON, III
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE COUNCIL OF
THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE
DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
Joshua Clifton Dickinson, III
To my wife
I wish to express my sincerest appreciation to Doctor Raymond
E. Crist, my teacher and committee chairman. His help was invaluable;
in outlining a research proposal, pointing out subtle details in the
field, and in polishing the rough edges in the final dissertation draft.
Doctor Gerardo Budowski, professor of silviculture at the Inter-
american Institute of Agricultural Sciences at Turrialba, Costa Rica, is
also due a debt of gratitude. As a guest at the presentation of my
research outline, he was able to give expert orientation. Later, he
most kindly permitted me the use of his card file, library, and office
in Costa Rica for final preparation before going in the field.
I am deeply grateful to Doctors James R. Anderson, Hugh Popenoe,
and Alfred Hower, who, as my professors and committee members, have
helped immeasurably in my professional preparation.
While in the field in Peru, I was assisted and encouraged at
every turn by professional foresters serving with the Peace Corps.
Alan Dean, Warren Weed, and Peter Moller opened many official doors and
gave freely of their time and technical knowledge.
Throughout Peru and Brazil, everyone from technicians and busi-
nessmen to the unlettered farmers in the field were unstinting in their
patience and assistance. The knowledge acquired extends far beyond the
narrow scope of this dissertation.
I gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the
National Defense Education Act Fulbright Hays program and the Center
for Latin American Studies which made my research possible.
A final and heartfelt note of thanks goes to my wife Sally,
for her encouragement and typing and editing of reams of fieldnotes
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOrWLEDG.MENTS . .. .. . . . . iv
LIST OF TABLES .. .* . . . . . .. vii
LIST OF FIGURES . . . . . . viii
INTRODUCTION . . . . . * 9. . . . 1
I A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE EUCALYPT . . . ...
A Brief History of the Eucalypt
Footnotes, Part I . .
9 9 9 9
9 9 9 9 9
* 9 9 9 9
* 9 9 9 9
II THE PERUVIAN SIERRA .. . . ..... . .. . . 15
The Eucalypt and the Serrano *
Distribution of the Eucalypt *
The Eucalypt in Land Use 9 *
Silvicultural Practices . *
Utilization of the Eucalypt .,
Government Activity in Forestry
Footnotes, Part II . .
III T!E BRAZILIAN INDUSTRIAL TRIANGLE . . . . . .. 140
A Perspective on the Eucalypt in
The Eucalypt in Land Use . .
Silvicultural Practices *. .
9 9 9 9
* . .
Labor and Mechanization in Eucalypt Production
Utilization of the Eucalypt . . . . .
Government Activity in Forestry . . .
Footnotes, Part III . . . l. .
IV COMPARISONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS . . . . . 262
The Eucalypt in Peru and Brazil; A Comparison
Some Recommendations Directed to the Forest Service
of Peru * . . * * *
Footnotes, Part IV .. . .. . . . .
# . .. 263
* . 276
. . 294
BIBLIOGRAPHY . . . ... . . . . . 295
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH w . . . . . . 301
LIST OF TABLES
1 DATES OF EUCALYPT INTRODUCTION BY WORLD REGIONS
BEFORE 1900 . . ., . . .. . . 8
2 THE EUCALYPT IN THE MANTARO VALLEY: SALIENT DIFFERENCES
IN DISTRIBUTION BET.TEEN.THE LFPT AND RIGHT SIDES OF THE
MANTARO RIVER . . . . . . 40
3 ESTIMATED COST OF ESTABLISHING A ONE-HICTARE EUCALYPT
PLANTATION . . . . . . . . . 74
4 RETAIL VALUE OF COMPONENT PARTS OF 872 EUCALYPTS CUT IN
CUZCO, JANUARY, 1966 . . . . 93
5 FREIGHT RATES FOR EUCALYPT POLES PER FLATCAR TO PUNO,
JANUARY, 1966 . . . . . . . .. 96
6 SALE PRICES OF.EUCALYPT POLES IN PUTO, JANUARY, 1966 . 97
7 PARTIAL ANALYSIS OF COST IN DOLLARS PER 1,000 SEEDLINGS
PRODUCED IN THE NURSERY OF FRANCISCO TARAL O-IN
LOUVEIRA, SWO PAULO, APRIL, 1966 . . . . .. 171
8 WOOD DENSITY AND CHARCOAL CHARACTERISTICS OF EIGiT
EUCALYPTS USED FOR METALLURGICAL CHARCOAL .. 189
9 IDEAL PRODUCTION OF WOOD PER IHECTARE FOR THREE
CUTTING CYCLES . . . . . . . . 195
10 BREAKDOWN OF COST PER CUBIC METER OF PULPWOOD DELIVERED
AT MOGI GUAqU FROM THREE POINTS, JUNE, 1966 . . . . 220
11 PRICE LIST IN DOLLARS FOR WOL.ANIZED POLES FOR PREMA,
RIO CLARO, SXO PAULO, MAY, 1966. . . . . . 237
12 MEANS OF PRODUCING OR ACQUIRING EUCALYPT SEEDLINGS
FOR PLANTING IN PERU AND BRAZIL . .. . . . 265
13 A COMPARISON OF EUCALYPT UTILIZATION IN PERU AND RA.ZIL . 270
LIST OF FIGURES
THE EUCALYPT . . . . . . .
SOUTH AMERICA. Locating Peru and Brnzil.. . ....
EUCALYPTS IN CUZCO, 1911 . . . . .
COMMUNAL EUCALYPT PLANTATION . . . . .
TIE KIKUYU GRASS PLAGUE . . . . . ..
SOUTHERN PERU. Locating Study Areas in the Sierra
and Delimiting the Potential Range of Commercial
Eucalypt Plantations *. . . . . . . .
HUANCAYO: AN ISLAND IN A SEA OF EUCALYPTUS . ..
EUCALYPTS ON THE HACIENDA . . . . . . .
EUCALYPTUS ON THE MINIFUNDIA . . . . . . .
THE LIMIT OF PLANTED TPEES . . .
NET GROWTH FROM AN OFT-COPPICED STUMP . . . .
HUALIUAS, PERU. Changing Patterns in Eucalypt
Distribution . . . . . . . . .
SMALL-SCALS NURSERY OPERATION, TITICACA LITTORAL .
LILLIPUTIAN SCALE FORESTRY . . .. . . .
A EUCALYPT IIPRSRY IN THE MANTARO VALLEY . . .
EUCALYPT SEEDLINGS IN CANS . . . .
UIRAFLORES, A VILLAGE SPECIALIZING IN EUCALYPT
PRODUCTION . . . . . . .
PORTABLE SEED BEDS . . . . . . .
SHADING OF NEWLY TRANSPLANTED SEEDLINGS . . .
SEEDLING PROTECTION: ROCK CAIRNS . . . .
SEEDLING PROTECTION: SPINES . . .
LIST OF FIGURES (Continued)
* 4 4
* 4 .
* 4 4 *
4 4 4 4
4 4 4 4
4 4 4 4
* 4 4
4 S 4
ARCHAIC TWO-MAN SA . . . .
READY-MADE DOOR FRAMES . . . .
READY-MADE COFFINS . . . .
TOY AND TOOL HANDLE MANUFACTURE . .
ROOF BEAMS BEING PREPARED IN THE FIELD .
EUCALYPT SLABS IN ROOF CONSTRUCTION
HOMEMADE FURNITURE IN THE SUNDAY MARKET
A PRIMITIVE LATHE . . .
ALL EUCALYPT TRUCK BODY, CUZCO . .
FUEULOOD FOR TIE HIUANCAYO MARKET . ..
THE INDUSTRIAL TRIANGLE OF BRAZIL. Loca
Eucalypt Consuming Industries .* .
EUCALYPTS IN SXO PAULO. Major Producing Municipal-
cities; Percentage of Area in Plantations .
UPROOTING EUCALYPTS TO MAKE WAY FOR SUGAR CANE
TRANSITION FROM EUCALYPTUS TO CORN AND ORANGES
PROTECTION OF NEWLY SPROUTED SEEDLINGS . .
PELOTINIOS READY FOR SALE . . .
LEAF CUTTING ANT CONTROL: A SERIOUS PROBLEM .
THE CHAINSAW IN EUCALYPT LOGGING . . .
ASSEMBLY OF LOGS FOR MECHANICAL CUTTING . .
TRACTOR DRAWN WAGONS MOVE WOOD TO KILS .
SPECIAL TRUCKS FOR HAULING EUCALYPT POLES
ESSENTIAL OILS EXTRACTION .' .
EUCALYPT PLANTING ON BARE ROCK. . .
4 0 0 v 4 a 4
4 4 4
* 4 4
4 4 4
* 4 4
4 4 4
4 4 4
4 4 4
4 9 4
* 4 4
* 4 4
Frontpiece. THE EUCALYPT the only tree producing first-class
wood that may be harvested by the man who plants it.
~I. :P~; c
I. a "'
'L.' rf' I:~31~P~es?~-~~i
"~ t' "".
s ~ !" ~-
In most developing countries, hunting and gathering of food has
been supplanted by agriculture. In contrast, gathering persists as the
principal means of obtaining wood. The wood-producing plant is one of
the last being domesticated by man. This dissertation is the study of
such a plant, the eucalypt, in two culturally and physically disparate
In the basins of the Peruvian Sierra and in the industrial tri-
angle of eastern Brazil, a lucrative market for wood has spurred large
companies and even short-sighted individuals to plant trees (Fig. 1).
In these cases, the extremely rapid growth rate of the eucalypt has
been a key factor in the conversion from gathering to domesticating
wood. This change is particularly interesting to study for several
reasons. The eucalypt was introduced into the two areas less than a
century ago and has become commercially significant in the last 30
years. In the Peruvian Sierra, the eucalypt was adopted by the people
of a traditional society first for their own use and then as a cash
crop sold to the mines. It has largely supplanted use of native woods
which are invariably stunted, of poor quality, and slow growing.
In Brazil, the eucalypt came on the heels of rampant deforest-
ation. Shortage of locomotive fuel influenced the railroad industry
to plant, a lead soon followed by further plantings to satisfy domestic
and industrial fuel needs. In the last two decades, the most dynamic
.RIO DE JANEIRO
Locating Peru and Brazil
SCALE IN KILOMETERS
0 400 800 1200 1600
I l l i l
Figure 1. SOUTH AMERICA. Locating Peru and Brazil.
afforestation has been carried out to supply charcoal to steel mills
and to create raw material for paper and fiberboard industries.
Outside the areas of eucalypt innovation, both countries are
still in the gathering stage. Lumber is trucked from ever-receding
forests, or it is imported. In this work, I treat the,two study areas
separately. Emphasis is placed on:
1) Patterns of the eucalypt on the landscape. Discussion illus-
trates how these patterns relate to such cultural factors as
holding size and market accessibility, and to physical con-
trols of soil, altitude, and topography.
2) Silvicultural techniques. The many variations are outlined
from seed selection through exploitation.
3) Utilization* All the uses are described, from the anthro-
pologically interesting medicinal applications to the econ-
omically important modern industrial manufacture of paper.
4) Government activity in the sphere of plantation forestry.
Included is an evaluation of organized afforestation proj-
ects, research activities, and forest law.
Following analysis of the eucalypt in Peru and Brazil, notable
points of contrast and parallel are discussed. Rather than list con-
clusions, I have chosen to distill from more than a year's comparative
observation and thought, a set of general and specific recommendations
for the improvement of eucalypt forestry. The recommendations are
addressed specifically to the Forest Service of Peru, but will also
find a measure of applicability in the densely populated and under-
forested highlands extending from Bolivia to central Mexico.
When discussing a particular species of the genus Eucalyptus,
the specific name is used prefixed by a capital E. Most of the study
deals with the various species of the genus collectively, hence the
common name, eucalypt, is used. Generic names of other plants are
used when first appearing, followed by locally used common names.
Frequently used foreign terms are italicized and defined as necessary,
when first appearing only.
The metric system is used throughout except where local usage
dictates otherwise; lumber volume is expressed in board feet, and
diameter in inches (Peru). All prices are converted to United States
dollars from Peruvian soles (27 to the dollar in 1965) and Brazilian
cruzeiros (2120 to the dollar in the first half of 1966).
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE EUCALYPT
A Brief History of the Eucalypt
The genus Eucalyptus, the most famous member of the Myrtaceae
family, made its debut appropriately enough at Botany Bay in Australia.
It was first collected in 1770 by a botanist accompanying Cook on his
first Pacific voyage. It was not described however until 1789.
L'Heritier derived the name Eucalyptus from the Greek words "eu" (well)
and "kalyptos" (I cover), in reference to the lid or operculum which
seals the flower in the cup-shaped, hard bud. In its native Australia,
the genus occurs in many forms, from desert shrub to tall rainforest
tree. Since 1789, botanists have described some 600 species, sub-
species, varieties, and recognized hybrids.2 Fortunately, this study
does not deal with the taxonomy of the genus. This stormy sea has
caused the floundering of many a student. The anthropocentric abstrac-
tion of "species" is strained by both the great variation within the
myriads of species and the rather amoral habit of hybridizing by some
eucalypts. "Speciation" takes place before your very eyes when amateur
naturalists and herbarium-bound taxonomists commence describing.
A number of new varieties have already been described among
exotic populations, such as Eucalyptus globulus, var. compact (Hort)
from California.3 A proliferation of varieties may well occur in Peru.
The Quechua-speaking Indians recognize three varieties of E. globulus
based on wood characteristics, tro on bark differences, and two, desig-
nated male and female, based on the presence or absence of phallic
characteristics in the physiognomy.
With the exception of several Melanesian species, the genus is
restricted to continental Australia. The spread of the eucalypts from
their evolutionary hearth is a fascinating study of diffusion. As we
can see in Table 1, the eucalyptus had a foothold in all the continents
by 1850. Shortly thereafter, a flood of introductions began. The dates
illustrated are representative of the process. Though specific dates
are not documented, there is ample evidence that many more countries
received the eucalypts before 1900. These introductions were generally
just that; plantings made in botanical gardens or on private estates of
a few individuals for scientific or aesthetic purposes.
Large-scale plantings were not the rule at first. Fact and
fancy about the tree's medicinal properties spread rapidly. Ridding
Italy's Pontine marshes of the malaria scourge was attributed to the
cleansing of the air by eucalypts. In fact, the trees probably de-
stroyed mosquito breeding places by either piercing a perched water
table with their roots or transpiring collected water. A striking
exception occurred in Ethiopia where the emperor established extensive
fuelwood plantations by fiat in 1885.5 This was the forerunner of the
great awakening, early in the twentieth century, to the utilitarian
value of the various species of the genus.
The eucalypt excels in the rapid production of relatively
dense wood for fuel and fiber. As an exotic, the tree displays a super-
ior growth rate and a broader range of adaptability than in its native
Australia. It will produce an erect tree in habitats where the climax
expression of the indigenous vegetation is a twisted shrub.
DATES OF EUCALYPT INTRODUCTION BY WORLD REGIONS BEFORE 1900
1800 1820 1840 1860 1880 1900
Source: Navarro de Andrade, Eucalipto (Jundiai: Companhia Paulista de
Estradas de Ferro, 1961), p. 49-58.
The exact date the eucalypt arrived in Peru is uncertain,
although it is known that the first eucalypt seedlings recorded in the
Western Hemisphere were bound for Peru.
. Chile received the first plants in 1823, carried by an
English sailing ship. These plants were destined for Peru,
but fearing to lose them, the captain presented them to Sr.
Santiago Jorge Bynon, who was only able to save eleven of them.6
It may be surmised that despite initial failure, the Peruvian eucalyp-
tophile eventually obtained plants or seeds. Subsequent introductions
took place in 1838 and 1844 in Chile, indicating that opportunities
Of transcendent interest to me is the introduction of the euca-
lypt in the Sierra. Here the tree became not just a botanical curios-
ity, but an integral part of the material culture. In the Mantaro
Valley, the tree became established sometime after 1865.
1865 the families Raez and Gemez planted seeds brought from
Lima by a Frenchman, M. Lapier, which were imported from
Australia during the government of Manuel Pardo (1872 to 1876).
1872 trees appeared in Concepcion at the mill of Sr. Duarte
and from there were planted at the Ocopa mission in 1880.7
The first introduction of the eucalypt is attributed to Padre
Guzman, who is said to have brought it in (the Mantaro Valley)
between 1875 and 1880.8
Which of the above references is correct is not known, but the horti-
culturally inclined Franciscans must be credited with bringing the
eucalypt to the people. Probably they stressed the medicinal value of
the tree for "cleansing" the air.
Interviews with old men in the Cuzco and Puno areas indicated
that planting began there at least as early as 1880. One of Isaiah
Bowman's photographs in 1911 shows eucalypts predominant in the
landscape of Cuzco (Fig. 2). Exasperatingly, he makes no mention of
them. Why? I infer that either the tree was so generally established
that it was not considered noteworthy, or that plantings were orna-
mental and had not become economically important enough for mention.
The latter assumption is substantiated by other Bowman photographs
which show scattered dooryard clusters of trees where I found exten-
sive fencerow and some solid plantations in 1966.
The eucalypt arrived in Brazil as early as 1824, according to
In the historical resume of his Ilortus Fluminensis, published
in Rio de Janeiro in 1894, J. Barbosa Rodrigues asserts that
Frei Leandro do Sacramento, director of the Botanical Gardens
from March 1824 to July 1828, had planted there two specimens of
Eucalyptus gigantea . these trees were listed in the unpub-
lished Catalog of Cultivated Plants in the Botanical Garden,
which he left to his successor.10
The bulk of the references cited by Navarro de Andrade (the eucalyp-
tophile emeritus of Brazil) were from the period 1860 to 1880, concern-
ing plantings in the States of Rio de Janeiro and Rio Grande do Sul.
The eucalypt suffered one reversal when in 1882 the people of Vassouras,
near Rio de Janeiro, uprooted all the eucalypts planted in the park
and along the streets because they blamed the tree for causing yellow
fever.11 A similar setback occurred recently at Chuquito on Lake
Titicaca where all the huge eucalypts in the plaza were cut down
because they caused wind.
E. globulus is ubiquitous among the early introductions. Its
natural range included parts of Tasmania and southern Victoria, areas
frequented by early travellers to Hobart and Melbourne. This contrib-
uted to its early description, as did its distinct appearance; great
Figure 2. EUCALYPTS IN CUZCO, 1911. Eucalypts figure prominently
in three of Isaiah Bowman's photographs taken during his transit
along the seventy-first meridian.
height, silvery bark, and large fruits. Outside of Australia, the
eucalypt became associated with salubrious air and patent medicine,
only later becoming a mainstay in fuel and timber supply. E. globulus,
as an exotic, has done best where latitude and altitude conspire to
provide cool conditions without heavy frost. In its native Tasmania,
at 43' South Latitude, its altitudinal limit is 400 meters, while at
the equator it grows as high as 4,000 meters. Although other species
have subsequently shown adaptability to cooler climes, E. globulus is
the most universally established. It is dominant in such extratropical
areas as Spain, Chile, and the State of California, and in such equa-
torial, high altitude zones as Ethiopia and the Andes.
FOOTNOTES, PART I
A. R. Penfold and J. L. Willis, The Eucalypts (London:
Leonard Hill Books, Ltd., 1961), p. XIX.
United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, Eucalypts
for Planting (Rome: 1955), p. 153.
3Ibid., p. 243.
Navarro de Andrade, O Eucalipto (Jundiai: Companhia Paulista
de Estradas de Ferro, 1961), p. 49-58.
A. R. Penfold and J. L. Willis, op. cit., p. 98.
6Navarro de Andrade, op. cit., p. 53-54.
Anonymous, "Cultivo del Eucalipto," Florecillos de San Antonio,
Vol. XCII (13 de Agosto de 1919), p. 222-223.
8Richard N. Adams, A Community in the Andes, Problems and Prog-
ress in Muguiyauyo (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1959),
Isaiah Bo-wman, The Andes of Southern Peru (New York: Henry
Holt and Company, 1916), p. 66.
10Navarro de Andrade, op. cit., p. 57.
1Ibid., p. 56.
THE PERUVIAN SIERRA
The Eucalypt and the Serrano
A major incentive for study in Peru was to discover the degree
of incorporation of the eucalypt into the material culture of the
Andean Indian. I discovered two types of Indians. Those of pre-
Hispanic cultural traits either live above the altitudinal limit of
the eucalypt, or exist in isolated enclaves, often as landless tenants
on haciendas. The other Indians are culturally, if not racially,
mestizo. They are only vestigially tied to the customs and practices
of their ancestors. Among other innovations, they plant eucalyptus.
These are the people with whom I worked. Henceforth, rather than use
the term "Indian," I shall refer to these people as "Serranos"; tradi-
tional peasant inhabitants of the Sierra.
Basically and for the most part, the civilization is what
may best be described as the world's characteristic traditional
civilization. It is pre-scientific and pre-mechanical, and the
methods of cultivation and modes and tools of labor that are in
use are those which have been learned by experimentation and
experience throughout many generations and have been handed down
by example. .. It is characteristic of the traditional civili-
zation that plowing is done with oxen and a wooden plow, or even
by hand with a spade; that crops are planted and harvested by
hand using simple tools; that products are stored in the houses
of the farmers, where more space is occupied by crops and animals
than by the farm family; that farmers and their families bring
farm products on weekly market days to nearby villages and towns,
where "fairs" are held; that villagers, including farmers, work
in handicraft industries usually a different one in each vil-
lage such as pottery, leather-working, weaving, silver-smithing,
and so on; that labor in mines and factories is interrupted when
the laborer returns to his farm to plant or harvest his crops;
that women and children spend long hours tending the cattle and
other livestock while they graze; that family farms are small
and that many laborers are needed on the great estates; that
private holdings, though small, are fragmented and scattered;
that some land of doubtful productivity is cultivated; that
incomes per person are low and standards of living simple.1
Over much of the Sierra, the rural population is agglomerated
in "indigenous communities." These communities are not indigenous in
origin. They are concentrations (reducciones) of the scattered Indian
population made early in the Colonial Period to facilitate political
control and religious instruction.2
Acculturation has led to a change in tenure anttnrnc. Origin-
ally, land was held communally. Part of the cropland was farmed by
communal work parties (mitas) for the benefit of the Church or commun-
ity. This corresponds to the communal cultivation of the lands of the
Inca in pre-Conquest times. The rest was parcelled out to each family
according to its needs. Land cold be redistributed to allow everyone
periodic use of the best land. Under this tenure system, the deep
attachment of the Serrano to the land was a diffuse expression not
directed toward a specific piece of ground.
The present tendency, at least in the Mantaro Valley, is toward
permanent private ownership at the expense of Church and community land.
Permanent ownership is a prerequisite for cultivation of perennials,
be they fruit trees, eucalypts, or even alfalfa. I do not know Whether
expansion of perennial cultivation was a cause or effect of the trend
toward private onmcrshii). Private ownership and perennials contribute
:ro.itly to the problems of holding fragmentation and inheritance dispute.
The process of land subdivision among all offspring involves the poor
Serrano in endless litigation over minuscular plots o! Irnd. The law
profession makes no attempt to set rigid precedents in order to facil-
itate quick, just settlement; cxtenlcd litigation is their bread and
butter. Uhen there are trees on the land in dispute, they cannot be
cut until all parties are satisfied with the division of the land.
Eucalypts on the land are a focal point of controversy because this
particular species represents an immediate cash windfall, whereas the
land itself takes value from its somewhat dubious crop-producing poten-
tial. If the trees could be cut for once and for all and the money
split, all would be settled, but the vigorous sprouts from the eucalypt
stump produce another cash crop in six years, a share of which no one
The rate and extent of acceptance of the eucalypt in the mater-
ial culture of the Serrano is determined by the following conditions:
1) A permissive environment allowing the tree to grow without
2) A market or need for the product.
3) Secure private tenure of land and the concomitant habit of
Along the Urubamba Valley in the Department of Cusco, one sees many
people in the garb of Incaic times (at least within camera shot of the
tourists). Here, the hacienda dominates the land. Although the three
conditions for acceptance of the eucalypt are fulfilled, they obtain
to the hacendado cultural group. The hacendados are owners of large
holdings, generally extensively managed, who are racially and cultur-
ally European in background and aspirations.
The Aymara-speaking people living on the Lake Titicaca littoral
exhibit perhaps a higher index of "Indian-ness" than those of the
Mantaro Valley communities. Even among the young men, it is frequently
difficult to communicate in Spanish. However, these same people are
planting eucalypts near almost every house. The number of trees per
capital is low, partially due to high population pressure on the culti-
vatable soil. WTith the lake standing at 3,814 meters, less than 200
meters spread in cultivation is available for crops or trees. Also,
the harsh climate causes high seedling mortality, militating against
the would-be planter. Thus the environment, not the culture, discour-
ages planting of the eucalypt on a larger scale.
I was informed that some fishing boats are made from eucalypt
wood. This news came shortly before I left the area. Two attempts to
investigate were foiled by flat tires. (Tires are expensive, so one
forgoes the luxury of a spare.) However, if the Serranos are building
boats, it signals a significant breakthrough in the Indian's relation-
ship with the lake. The people of Amazonia have simply hitched the
outboard motor to their superficially modified primeval dugouts and
have entered into twentieth century commerce. The Indians inhabiting
the Titicaca littoral have found no such facile means of converting
their totora grass (Scirpus totora) balsas to fast cargo vessels able
to cross the open lake. They have never had wood for boat building.
Their culture is basically agricultural, the lake providing a suitable
microclimate for crops. The shallows of the lake yield totora grass
for roofing, boats, fodder, and human food from the rhizomes. Small
chubs and catfish constitute incidental protein in the diet. There has
been little incentive to venture out in the open waters. As in the
rest of the American tropics, no large predatory food fish has evolved
above 1,500 meters elevation that would make fishing remunerative.3
Since the 1930's, this situation has changed. The intr-nucsd rainbow
trout found a wholly unoccupied niche in the food chain and have
prospered fantastically in the year-round growing season of the tropics.
During the last three years, four canneries have begun buying trout to
can for the European market. The Indians selling trout to the canner-
ies are using seaworthy, clinker-built, fishing dories. Originally,
these were manufactured on the Bolivian side of the lake by an American,
who used imported wood. There is also a wooden sailboats building
industry which has developed principally on the island Amantani, where
there are five boatyards. They use local wood, colli (quishuar) and
eucalypt from Cuzco, and pine imported via Arequipa. With the plant-
ings of eucalypts now available, the lake shore peoples have the raw
materials locally available for the first time. Wooden boats, eventu-
ally mechanized, will give them the capacity to make the same step for-
ward in transportation made by the Amazon peoples.
In the Mantaro Valley, the eucalypt achieves its maximum expres-
sion as part of the Serrano's material culture. In most of the villages
dotting the. Valley, there are one or two individuals raising a small
bed of seedlings for personal use and possibly for sale to a neighbor.
Generally, families cultivate vegetables and alfalfa in the miniscule
irrigated plots near the houses. In the village of Miraflores, I found
an -intensive eucalypt nursery operation comprising some 30 plots, with
an estimated'400,000 seedlings. The production of seedlings for sale
in the Sunday market fits into a pattern of specialization where by
entire villages concentrate on one product line.6
I do not know how long ago the Serrano began planting trees as
a supplement to wood found in natural forests. Old rows of also
(Alnus), queuna (Polylepis spp), or qMishuar (Buddleia spp), all of
which definitely antedate the eucalypt, attest to an earlier preoccu-
pation with wood supply. If tree planting ware already an established
cultural trait, it is easy to see how the eucalypt, with its superior
growth habits, could achieve rapid acceptance.
Possibly closer to the indigenous culture than tree planting
on private land, is the fairly widespread acceptance of communal
The planting of trees has been an important activity in
Muquiyauyo for many years. The valley does not have a natural
tree cover, so wood for fuel and construction must be cultivated.
The district session books frequently record that a committee
has been appointed to see to the acquisition of trees, or that
some work project will be held to plant some.. The earliest men-
tion is in November, 1887, when it vas decided to hold a work
session (faena) to plant alder trees alsos) in the alameda.
The first record of the district's decision to buy eucalypt trees
was made in 1911, when four boxes were ordered from Tarma.
In 1920, it was agreed to plant eucalyptus on the new alameda all
the way to the base of the mountain. Until third time it had been
the practice to bring the young trees from Tarma, but in this
session it was suggested to seed them in Muquiyauyo.7
The custom of tree planting and the presumably pre-Hispanic system of
the mita for organized communal work have greatly facilitated a Forest
Service AID reforestation project on degraded communal lands. Rather
than provide the laborers with hot food and chicha (the popular fer-
mented corn drink), the Forest Service pays cash and food from the
Auerican Food for Peace program.
Concoctions of eucalypt leaves are used in treatment of grippe
and other ills throughout the Sierra. The incorporation of the encalypt
in the conservative folk pharmacopoeia is a significant milestone in
cultural acceptance. (For detailed description, see pages 127 and 128.)
The eucalypt has become everyman's tree in the Peruvian Sierra.
It supports the poor man's roof, provides the fuel for his fire, and
windfalls of extra income. Indigenous communities build schools with
the proceeds from communal plantations (Pig. 3). The tree regenerates
from the stump, providing a continuing supply of wood through'several
cycles of cutting. Vegetation in the Sierra is much like that of a new
housing development; trees are where they are because man has seen fit
to plant them there. Agriculture, fuelwood cutting, burning, and over-
grazing have beset the land for so many centuries that only vestiges
of the natural forest persist. The eucalypt has become the dominant
tree in the Sierra.
The acceptance of the eucalypt is not surprising. The Serrano
is surrounded by a phalanx of flora, fauna and acouterments of alien
cultures, although corn, potatoes, and to a lesser extent, quinoa, are
still staple crops. The European broad bean is important and in some
areas wheat and barley dominate the landscape. In the cultivated val-
leys of the Department of Cuzco, the planting of barley is stimulated
by the large breviery in Cuzco. The brewery provides selected seed,
credit, and a guaranteed price at harvest to those who plant.
The cuy or guinea pig and the muscovy duck are the only pre-
Hispanic animals commonly used by the valley people. The cuy is a
holiday delicacy. Everyday protein sources include the imported
rabbit, pork, mutton, beef, and chicken. All derive part or all of
their diet from alfalfa. It can be assumed that the diet of the
Serrano is richer in animal protein now than in Incaic times. Also,
proportionately more of the valley dweller's land is devoted to forage
than in earlier times.
I rarely saw llamas below 4,000 meters elevation and then
only in transit carrying goods.
To me, alfalfa is the most interesting of the introduced plants
because of its prominent place on the irrigated land near each house#
and its importance in maintaining domestic animals. Expansion of euca-
lypt planting beyond the dooryard first occurred along the borders of
irrigated fields. Among the irrigated crops, alfalfa possesses the
deep root system and shade tolerance necessary to compete with nearby
trees for water and light. Annual field crops, particularly corn, do
poorly in the fragmented fields, which are boxed in by trees.
A tenuous yet interesting relationship has developed between
the eucalypt and another more recently introduced exotic, kikuyu grass
(Tennisetum clandestinum). It was brought in some 30 years ago, in
hopes of improving pastures. In the high basins, it is but another
scourge visited upon the stony, hail-pelted fields of the Serrano.
The seed is apparently carried by the irrigation water. A newly cleaned
field planted to alfalfa is taken over and rendered unproductive by the
kikuyu grass in about three years. This is disastrous when a field
should yield alfalfa for 6 to 10 years. The ancient European wooden
plows, pulled by scrawny undersized bulls, cannot break the matted run-
ners of kikuyu grass. When the community has a tractor, the grass can
be controlled in the larger, annually cropped fields of corn and pota-
toes. The case is hopeless in the rock-rimmed irrigated fields and
terraces, often no larger than an average sized living room. The fre-
quent solution is to plant the field solidly in eucalyptus, ignoring
the kikuyu and plucking the few sprigs of alfalfa that continue to
break through (Fig. 4),
Figure 3. COMMUNAL EUCALYPT PLANTATION. Here in tuamali in the
Mantaro Valley, as elsewhere, eucalypt plantations provide funds
for public works which the uniformly poor citizens could not
easily provide through normal channels of taxation.
Figure 4. THE KIKUYU GRASS PLAGUC. Yield of alfalfa in this
field has been so reduced by kikuyu grass invasion that the owner
feels that it is to his long term benefit to plant eucalypts.
If he ware to grub out the grass by hand, seed borne by irriga-
tion water would quickly renew the grass.
Distribution of the Eucalypt
Distribution of the eucalypt dramatically changes as one pro-
ceeds from the coast westward over the Andes into the upper Amazon
Basin (Fig. 5). Differences due to latitude are insignificant. In
each of the three regions of Peru, there is a unique limit on the euca-
lypt. These are:
1) The Coast inadequate water supply
2) The Sierra freezing temperatures
3) The Selva competition and predation
The first eucalyptus were probably planted on the desertic
Coast* Here the trees are utterly dependent on irrigation. The water
and land for crops are so precious that only ornamental plantings by
the municipalities and wealthy individuals are found. Though the num-
ber of trees is small, they dominate the landscape due to the dearth
of any other trees of equal stature. The well-watered parks of Lima
boast some of the most majestic, towering individuals found anywhere
in Peru. Some eucalypts are planted as windbreaks in the newly opened
irrigation projects, but generally Casuarina is used because of its
more derne crown.
The limit on the distribution of the eucalypt caused by rain-
fall deficiency is not sharp. The bounJory is masked by man's prac-
tice of irrigation. Even where sufficient precipitation occurs,
farmers generally plant trees along canals or in the borders of irri-
gated fields. This practice results in a similar distribution of
SOUTHERN PERU < a
Locating Study Areas in the Sierra and
Delimiting the Potential Range of Commercial Eucalypt Plantings
6 o Intermontane basins and eastern slope between 2000
and 3700 meters
FT7 Pacific slope 2000-3700 meters elevation
NOTE: The upper limit is set by low temperatures. The lower
occurs approximately where either high rainfall produces abundant -
natural vegetation or low rainfall combined with excessive evapo-
transpiration make irrigation mandatory. Urcos Huan
Cerro de PLsco
L ke o Abancay V
Lomas de Lochay
A REQUI PA
sc i k t :0:50 .-.-.-. : : *: : .. : **,..::; :*..i i.i i. .....
Figure 5. SOUTHERN PERU. Locating Study Areas in the Sierra and
Delimiting the Potential Range of Commercial Eucalypt Plantations.
plantations on the landscape under both humid and near-desertic condi-
tions. Trees are not planted just to prove they can survive, but where
they will most rapidly yield poles. Therefore, marginal land has here-
tofore seldom been planted.
SWhere irrigation is not used, it is common to see trees planted
along natural watercourses and in senile gullies. There, shade tends
to keep the humidity higher, more soil accumulates, and passing water
occasionally settles. Gullies also may intercept sufficient flow of
groundwater to support trees.
The Sierra is the core area of the eucalypt in Peru. Here is
found its maximum expression as a dominant tree on the landscape and
in the material culture of the highland people. In 1964, an estimated
62 )irccnt of the wood cut in Peru came from the Sierra, all of it
eucalypt. The tree is as much a part of the scene on the miniscular
holdings of the indigenous communities as on the haciendas. The
oblique view from a mountainside vantage point appears as a continuous
sea of green, while from above, rows of trees sharply delineate each
field. On the intensively managed haciendas of the Mantaro Valley,
eucalypt plantings form a patchwork of hollow squares enclosing each
field of a hectare or more. Plantings bordering the minifundia form
an almost closed canopy (Figs. 6, 7, and 8).
Commercial eucalypt Drolrtion, observed in the ncenrtmnnt of
Cuzco, is a virtual monopoly of the haciendas. The patterns of solid
blocks of trees on the land is strikingly different from the estab-
lished pattern predominant in the M-ntaro Valley, and emergent on the
Figure 6. HUANCAYO: AN ISLAND IN A SEA OF U JCALYPr3 From a
mountainside vantage point the Valley appears to be solidly
covered by forest. The airphotographs in the following two
figures illustrate the actual pattern of hollo"' squares in a
portion of the obliquely viewed area.
Figure 7. EUCALYPTS ON THI IIACIBNDA. Fields on medium sized
haciendas near FHuancayo are sharply delimited by eucalyptus.
Figure 8. EUCALYPTS ON THE MINIFUIIDIA. Eucalyptus outlining the
minute fragmented holdings of the Serrano.
~-, ~ -
Titicaca littoral. 1 here indigenous communities hold land, as around
Chacan, the eucalypt is well established as a dooryard supply of tim-
bers, but has not been planted extensively for extra-village markets.
Communal plantings on fairly deep soil in cooperation with the Forest
Service may change this orientation in years to come.
Man extends the eucalypt's range into dry areas with irriga-
tion, but high elevation is an impassable barrier to its cultivation.
The limit varies locally; on the slopes facing Lake Titicaca, eucalyptus
grow at an elevation of 4,100 meters. In general, no eucalyptus xwre
seen above 4,000 meters and few are planted above 3s700 meters'eleva-
tion. Above this level, frequent incidence of frost causes a hir;h
seedling mortality, discouraging ti[:lorc.L pl.ntin;. Only qucnua is
successfully planted between 3,700 meters and the treeline (rig. 9).
On the cold, windswept puna, no planted trees mark the settlements of
man. There, women cook with dung, peat, and twigs; icchu (Stin icchu)
grass roofs are supported by woven branches of stunted shrubs.
Certain growth habits characterize the eucalypt near its alti-
tudinal limit. Trees are frequently stunted and twisted with low
branches attributable to freeze back, hail damage, lack of competition,
and possibly the limitation on growth rate imposed by cold at high
altitude. Closely spaced rows of trees of nearly equal age and breast
height diameter on similar soils were half the height at 3,700 meters
as were those found at 3,200 meters. The squat appearance was char-
acteristic around Lake Titicaca as well. Woodcutters reported that
trees coppice only if felled just before or early in the rainy summer
season with its milder temperatures and higher humidity. Trees cut in
iure 9, TUGi LTTIT OF PLVr inT 1 T'1. OlrTiun (Polylcots) is the
most commonly planted tree in the n;titulinnal one just belot? the
pinn. The trees are short and curiously fint tonw!,. Tn the
'nU'l.c! couirty:r.! of one of these houses, I four.' I lone eucnlypt
l. nntc:. The photos," h Was taken betraen Ifunnrnyn and P,nn.
^ ** -*'*v' '-'* ''"
the dry winter months often do not survive because the sprouts are
killed by frost or drought. Most afforestation takes DlIce on the air-
drained slopes, often several kilometers back from the lake. There,
best seedling survival and regeneration takes place. Experiments indi-
cate that Pinus radiata functions well near the altitudinal limits
because it is more frost resistant and its needles shed the hail that
defoliates the eucalypt,
The transition between the Sierra and the Selva is abrupt for
both man and vegetation. The Ceja de MontaTa, or eyebrow of the moun-
tain, marks well where the clouds and mists of the Amazon reach their
high water mark on the wall of the Andes. This lnndscnpe is dominated
by a low forest covered with epiphytes or bracken-like second growth.
Man's activity is in transition in the Ceja. Shiftin: culti-
vation and permanent fields exist side by side. Ihre the primitive
sedentary farmer of the crowded highlands learns the extensive shift-
ing cultivation of the humid tropics, and then moves down into the
Selva. The eucalypts that are planted are not in field borders as in
the Sierra, but are in clumps or as individuals near houses. Below
Iluanuco, I saw a stand of several hundred trees amidst shifting culti-
vation fields. In a few kilometers, the eucalypt disappears as an
integral part of the landscape and economy, and becomes a mere curios-
ity. The man moving to the Ceja suddenly finds an ample supply of
poles and firewood in the second growth forest. le no longer needs
to plant his wood supply. lHe is cut off from contact with buyers
from the mines and towns; buyers who formerly provided him with a
ready market for his trees* There is little stability of fiElrds or
tenure, which is a prerequisite for plantation forestry.
The range of eucalyptus does not include more than the fringe
of the humid tropics below the Sierra. This is due to a cultural, not
a physical, barrier. This area is still somewhat remote from markets
and eucalypts. The people are not presently interested in plantation
forestry because the supply of native wood is adequate. If the incen-
tive to plant develops, there are no ecological limitations.
In the Sierra, eucalypt management is a somewhat passive oper-
ation involving prayers for rain and against frost and hail. Below
the Ceja, there is plenty of rain, but seedling survival in in greater
jeopardy than in the high country. Vigorous second growth quickly
chokes out the delicate eucalypt unless several clearings are made dur-
ing the first two years of growth. More serious is the 1cnCcuttcr ant
(Atta spp), which will walk a mile for a eucalypt. These ants can
clean a tree in a day. They must be controlled with chemical formi-
cides. Neither the material nor the techniques are commonly known
among the potential eucalypt cultivators east of the Andes.
The Eucalypt in Land Use
The Mantaro River has its origins high among the snow-covered
peaks north of Cerro de Pasco. It flows parallel to the axis of the
western and central ranges of the Andes (roughly south southwest)
until just short of Ayacucho. There it turns back on itself and forms
an "S" as it drops precipitously into the Apurimac Rivcr. "Mantaro
Valley" is the term applied only to that broadened portion of the valley
between 3,350 and 3,150 meters'elevation. The altitude and topography
permit intensive agriculture. Location makes the Valley a major sup-
plier of grains and potatoes to Lima, and from it comes as well the euca-
lypt wood for the mines of the central Andes.0 The river is bridged
when it enters the Valley at Jauja and again at Huancayo, some 49 kilo-
meters downstream. The transportation and commerce of the Valley are
completely polarized toward the two major markets at the bridgeheads.
The wide, braided bed of the Mantaro River effectively isolates the
villages on one side from those on the other. The two sides are re-
ferred to as the Margen Izquierda and Margen Derecha, or left and
right margins. The left (east) side of the Valley is favored by the
presence of a major paved highway and railroad. The right margin has
been served by a poor dirt road which is only now being paved. It is
a backwater in the interregional trade and transport systems.
Water for irrigation is a key factor in differentiating land
use on the two sides of the river. The entire left side has irrigation
water via a major canal diverted from the River at Jauja and through
streams that flow down from the better watered mountains to the east.
Traditional patterns of agriculture are relatively homogeneous on
either side of the river with some variations. Greater isolation and
substantially less irrigated land have been contributing factors to
a lower population density on the right side. This is particularly
evident where the irrigation water peters out at Sicaya. Fewer people
and less water lead to somewhat larger individual holdings. Extensive
patches of pama or plain are planted to barley and wheat, which are
frequently cultivated and harvested with communal tractors and har-
vesters. The grain is threshed by driving a tractor or oxen around
the threshing floor. The women winnow the grain by throwing it in
Climate permits the eucalypt to grow anywhere in the Valley,
and to an elevation of 500 meters above the valley floor on either side.
Only scattered copses of trees attest to the potential range of the
eucalypt. The greatest concentrations of trees are found on the irri-
gated valley land* There are fewer eucalypts on the right margin than
on the left. This is partially because there is less irrigated land
on the right margin and it is less fragmented, thus reducing the den-
sity of field borders available for planting. Several other factors
influence the presence of more trees on the left side of the River.
The introduction and planting of the eucalypt apparently took place
at Concepcion and at the nearby Franciscan mission at Ocopa. The impor-
tance of this hearth was enhanced by the establishment of a Ministry of
Agriculture tree nursery in Concepcion in 1934. The people of Mira-
flores were apparently the first to exploit the commercial potential
of seedling production for the Huancayo market (see pages 61-69).
When the mining companies began buying eucalypt wood during the
1930's, they established wood yards on the railroad sidings at tluanceyo
and Jauja, both on the left side of the River. The greater accessibil-
ity of stands led to preferential cutting on that side as well. On the
right margin, trees generally have been cut only once. Furthermore,
the trunks returning after the first coppice are, on the average, of
greater diameter than those being exploited on the left side. There
are fewer trees being planted on unirrigated land on the right side.
I was told it is because of a high incidence of frost. This is in
part true, but a more important factor is a less developed market incen-
tive and the lack of a demonstrative effect by neighbors who have suc-
cessfully planted without irrigation. The Forest Service has estab-
lished at least four communal plantations on the left side, while on
the other side, plantings were only in the negotiative stage during
The following table summarizes the geography of the eucalypt on
the two sides of the Mantaro River.
THE EUCALYPT IN TIl MANTARO VALLEY: SALIENT DIFnTRTNCCS
IN DISTRIBUTION BETWEEN THE LEFT AND RIGHT SIDES
OF THE MANTARO RIVER
Dense pattern in the bord-
ers of minutely subdivided
fields; frequent solid
Dynamic expansion, includ-
ing communal plantations.
Few stands more than 50
meters from a road.
Close management; trees
cut at or near minimum
diameter for the mines.
Open pattern due to lorg-
er holdings. No solid
Almost absent in fields;
some in dooryards.
Difficult access to stands
between the highway and
Relatively less logging,
some isolated stands reach-
ing saw timber dimensions.
- -- -~ --cl ~1111--C1111-14-1 1_-
- ---1.___~.1 - .-.. -- --
The place of the eucalypt in Serrano land use exhibits simul-
taneously, a striking parallel and variation with von ThUnen's theoret-
ical silvicultural ring* Silviculture practiced anywhere near where
von Thiinen hypothesized it to be in this century is related to several
restrictive conditions. First, the culture of the societal group must
be at least a semitraditional one, economically incapable of substituting
inorganic fuels and construction materials for locally available wood.
Second, all the naturally occurring wood within a day's walk of the
population center must have been destroyed. Third, the productivity of
the forest must be at least equal to the population's consumption rate.
These conditions are satisfied in the rural communities of the Mantaro
Valley and apply to a large segment of the urban population. The eucn-
lypt is the essence of the silvicultural ring. It is the only genus
with the rusticity, productivity, and quality of wood capable of filling
such a role.
Von Thiinen might have been somewhat dismayed at the way the
Serranos have distorted the first rings of his ideal land use model.
Essentially they have collapsed the horticultural and silvicultural
rings into a conglomeration of tree-bordered, intensively cultivated,
irrigated plots. In a city example, such as Huancayo, the combined
rings are immediately contiguous to the built-up core. On the rural
scene in somewhat dispersed villages such as Hualhuas, the combination
goes a step farther. With the exception of the town square, which
For discussion of a comparable situation, see Joshua C.
Dickinson, "Forest Use and Deforestation in a Mexican Ejido" (unpub-
lished Master's thesis, University of Florida, 1965), p. 56-64.
remains inviolate, the horticultural and silvicultural land use pene-
trates into the backyards of even the mainstreet business establish-
It is interesting to examine why the silvicultural ring came
to be superimposed upon that of predominant horticultural use. The
eucalypt began as a dooryard plant. It was soon discovered that the
trunk made straight, long-lasting timbers, superior to the quenua
they had previously planted. The branches and leaves were a good sup-
plement to the brushwood fuel laboriously gathered by the women in the
mountains. Since it first grew on the better soil favored by water,
it was easy to assume that these were the only conditions suitable for
the growth of eucalyptus. Planting was extended from the dooryard along
the borders of the adjoining fields. The trees made irrefutable bound-
ary delineations. In those days, population pressure and inheritance
had not created the acute holding fragmentation of today. The pattern
of trees was open and the number not great because planting was still
subsistence oriented. Many of the trees grew large because there was
no market for them.
The advent of the mining industry as a major consumer had a
profound influence on the eucalypt's place in Serrano agriculture.
The pattern of planting has become highly intensified in response to
a modern market stimulus. The centripetal auto-consumption pattern
of the traditional village has given way to rudimentary, but well-
defined, commercial forestry linked to the national economy. "hcn
a tree falls, it becomes an industrial raw material. Its handling is
entirely mechanized during transport and processing. The residual
leaves and branches not purchased by the mines are consumed by the
ceramic industry. No other Serrano crop is so completely converted
to cash income. Subsistence crops such as potatoes and corn are sold
only when surplus is produced.
This outward orientation has led to new patterns of the euca-
lypt on the land. Trees are not being planted outside the inner horti-
cultural ring in the position postulated by von ThUnen. An expansion
rather than a shift has occurred. A common characteristic of many
species of the genus Eucalyptus is their ability to coppice vigorously
and repeatedly; in all likelihood the root systems of some of the first
eucalyptus planted are marked today by several growing trunks. TYhile
some lose their vitality and die or are killed, most persist. Once
planted, the eucalypt becomes a permanent feature of the landscape,
despite its detrimental effect on horticulture* Tree plantin- is actu-
ally being intensified on the horticultural lands by the practice of
solid planting eucalypts on shaded out cropland.
The decision to solid plant is dependent upon several motiva-
tions, often interrelated. The most commonly encountered in interviews
with Serranos were:
1) He works in the mines part time or has a small business or
home industry and has time to cultivate only his best land.
2) Through marriage or inheritance he acquires a small piece
of land in another vilnaSe and doesn't feel it is worth the
travel time to plant, guard, and harvest an annual crop.
3) His neighbors have planted eucalyptus on all sides of one of
his narrow plots and he is being shaded out.
4) He has a piece of rocky, eroded land that barely returns
5) Frost, hail, drought, and insects, which dnm-ce two out of
three crops, so discourage him that he quits farming and
looks for other employment.
6) Kikuyu grass, which an ox-dratm plow cannot break, gets
ahead of him, so he plants eucalypts in his alfalfa patch.
The indigenous community of Hualhuas was selected for intensive
study of the eucalypt in man-land relations. In broad terms, the vil-
lage is representative of the Valley as a whole, but specifically of
those villages on the left margin of the Mantaro River. The people of
lualnhuas are so"oi.hnt more progressive than the average Serranos.
Many of the families engage in '-nvin', often for the Lima market.
Some heads of families are part-time travelling dry goods salesmen,
while others work in the mines during the agricultural off-season.
They have built primary and secondary schools. Thr community operates
a bus and two microbusses which provide regular service between the
neighboring villages and Huancayo. Use of the land is traditional.
Since its introduction some 80 years ago, the eucalypt has
followed a five-phase process of land occupance, namely:
1) Dooryard c:pcr!ment
2) Planting around irrigated cropland
3) Planting on unirrigated cropland
4) Solid planting of land
5) Cooperative plrntin; of communal grazing land
Examples of all five phases are evident in !nialhuis, inclu'ing old,
but productive stumps from the early dooryard plantings (Fig. 10).
In the first phase, a few trees are planted in the dooryard,
para ver si da (to see if they grow). Nascent commercialization occurs
in the second phrsc as the l]ndo-ncr systematically plants a line of
Figure 10. NP: GROCIT FROM AN OFF COPPICED STUMP. The multiple
scars indicate an age in excess of forty years.
trees around his field, usually on irrigated land near the house. lHe
may plant enough trees to sell a surplus to his neighbor. The third
through fifth phases are occurring almost simultaneously in some cases.
Columns of young trees are appearing in isolated lines in field borders
heretofore bare. In the fourth phase, the landowner solid plants his
land, frequently the same fields that nwre border planted in phase two.
The last phase is a totally new phenomenon. The eroded slopes now being
afforested with the support of the Forest Service and AID, were pre-
viously considered unsuitable for planting. In some cases, the Serrano's
judgement may be vindicated when the roots strike bedrock only a few
centimeters below the soil surface,
The accompanying map, Fig, 11, illustrates the geographic dis-
tribution of the eucalypt in the last four phases, as they appeared in
November of 1965.
In the Urubamba Valley, solid plantings of eucalyptus range
from stands of huge trees 50 years old to seedlings set out during the
last wet season. Some of the plantations are overage from a silvicul-
tural point of view. These trees were planted before a market devel-
oped and the absentee landowner frequently has not responded to the
market stimulus. Those landowners who have planted during the last
20 years were profit motivated and are exploiting their stands as the
trees reach marketable size.
Choice of planting sites has undergone a complete cycle. The
older stands are generally on cropland, often near the hacienda house*
Commercially oriented plantings during the last two years have been
S CHANGING PATTERNS IN
:.*i row plantings, 1955 air photograph
field observation, 1965;
f contiguous and isolated dwellings /
unpaved roads or paths
--- paved highway
-*-- Peruvian Central Railroad
SCALE IN KILOMETERS
o .72 .50
Figure 11. H11ALIIUAS, PERU. Changing Patterns in
on the steeper slopes. Near the torm of Urubamba, plantations occupy
the pediment between the valley floor and the rocky outcrops above.
In 1966, I observed new plantings of cropland. The motivation appears
to differ from that which prompted the first cropland occupnnce by
eucalypts. The Serranos are becoming'restless and difficult to nnnar e
Some remote haciendas have been invaded by the peasantry. :'ith this
unsettled background, landowners have reacted in various ways. In
anticipation of possible expropriation, some are intensively cultivat-
ing their land in an effort to get the most out of it in the shortest
time. Mechanization allows a Kcgrc of disassociation from the Serra-
nos, upon whom they once had to rely totally for labor tribute. Others
have resorted to absenteeism and tree farming all classes of land in an
effort to reduce the labor requirements to a minimum while still real-
izing a profit from the now lucrative eucalypt* The fainthearted have
abandoned their land for the security of Lima or a trip to Europe.
Around Lake Titicaca, the eucalypt is yet in the incipient
stages of land occupance. Only on a few of the larger holdings are
seen occasional tree-bordered fields, A few dooryard nlnntings of
quishuar and que ua illustrate the pre-eucalypt concern for wood sunply.
'.here microclimate permits, eucalyptus are the most commonly planted
trees. The great majority are less than ten years old. !There door-
yard stands have become established, landowners are tentatively extend-
ing their lines of trees along nearby field margins,
Climate and limited land area for crops are the major factors
inhibiting eucalypt planting. The northeastern side of Lake Titiccac
is separated from the city of Puno by a broad plain that was once part
of the Lake. Without the water to ameliorate temperatures, this area
suffers severe frosts which preclude forestry, as well as most crops.
The northeast side, by contrast, is broken by a profusion of hog-back
ridges which facilitate air drainage. On-shore air movement from the
Lake further reduces the incidence of killing frosts.* This is re-
flected in both the more varied natural vegetation and a broader choice
of cultigens. The density of eucalyptus is far greater than on the
western side, although still insufficient to supply basic construc-
Back of the first sheltering ridge on the more temperate IThan-
cane side of Lake Titicaca, I found a microcosm of the land use patterns
of the northeast shore. Like many of the ridges, this one was too
rocky for cultivation or grazing. The narrow pediment at the base of
the steeply sloping ridge was terraced to form a continuous band 10 to
15 meters wide. All the houses were on this terrace, backed against
a hill. There are several reasons for this locational pattern. When
the Lake was higher, the ridge was an island. Probably this has not
occurred in historic times, but even periodic fluctuations in water
level innundate low ground over a wide area surrounding the village.12
The house location maximizes the amount of land available for cultiva.
tion on the deep soils of the lower pediment and the flat. The base of
the ridge may offer some protection from the elements as well.
The location of the eucalyptus illustrates well the first stage
of their adoption as a cultigen. Trees are planted around every house,
forming an integral part of dooryard cultivation. Viewed from the
plain, the pattern can be seen repeated again and again. The patch-
work expanse of green and gold, potatoes and grain, suddenly rises at
the pediment to a line of brown adobe houses. Partially obscuring the
straw roofs, a jagged canopy of green eucalypt crowns breaks the abrupt
transition from one man's land to the bare rock above.
I interviewed one family in such a village. On approaching
several other houses, I was set upon by rabidly anti-American dogs.
Though probably not literally rabid, dogs are almost invariably vicious.
The dog population apparently descended from German shepherd and labra-
dor lineage, huge animals representing a distinct hazard to field work.
The landowner had a small stand of 12-year-old trees planted
behind the house. Two years ago, he planted 15 more trees along the
edge of the first field below the house. This year he has a bed of
several hundred seedlings in anticipation of more extensive planting
(Fig. 12). His conservative approach to innovation is characteristic
of peoples living near the subsistence level. At the same time, how-
ever, the planting of a tree that will have no economic value for at
least a dozen years evidences a degree of sophisticated farsightedness
not generally attributed to people living from harvest to harvest.
Halfway between Puno and Chuquito on the western littoral,
a small village lies in a rincon (corner) formed by a narrow stream
valley cut through a ridge of jagged rock. The houses compete for
space with tiny terraced fields along the 200 meters between the valley
head and Lake Titicaca. Here I saw a new terrace being chipped and
pried from the living rock. The dominant crops are onions and some
carrots. Another cash crop, carnations, lines the terrace edges.
An edible cress-like plant grows between the stones of the vertical
terrace walls. Several villagers have bathtub-sized fish ponds where
they raise the such, a small chub-like fish* The distinctly market-
oriented agriculture seemed at odds with the bucolic primitiveness of
Here and there were lines of 3 to 12 eucalyptus, each group the
result of a discrete decision by an individual. No tree exceeded 30
centimeters in diameter. With the exception of one old stump some
45 centimeters in diameter, I could find no evidence of any trees hav-
ing been cut. Most trees had their lower branches lopped off for fuel.
The eucalypt was apparently a new cultigen for most of the villagers,
a phenomenon of the last 10 to 15 years.
The process of innovation can be isolated near the fringe of
the eucalypt's range. Beyond Acora, about 10 kilometers from the lake,
I spotted three clumps of some six trees each along a ridge otherwise
devoid of eucalyptus. The old gentleman owning the largest trees had
planted them 15 years before. Last year, he replanted a dozen more
of which five had survived. At the time of the last planting, he had
tried a few Cypressus and Pinus radiata from the experimental nursery
of the Universidad Teenica del Altiplano at Camacani. It was very
interesting to find that two other clumps of younger trees were planted
by his sons. The trees are all producing seed, thus providing a new
supply more than 5 kilometers beyond the zone of more or less contin-
uous planting near the lake.
Basic nursery techniques
Four basic types of eucalypt nursery operations were encountered
in Peru. They are:
2) Auto-consumption and/or local sales
3) Large-scale private production for a regional market
4) Government nurseries for individual, institutional and
The smallest nursery I saw was of the first type. In the village
between Puno and Chuquito, described in the previous chapter, there
was one active nursery. In the walled-in back patio of his home, an
old man indicated as his seedbed a patch of earth I could have covered
with my hat. Under a teepee of sticks for protection from the elements
and chickens, were sprouting the first leaves of some 30 eucalypts,
Truly this was forestry on a Lilliputian scale (Fig, 13). On the north-
east side of the lake, I found a somewhat larger nursery with a dense
growth of several hundred seedlings occupying a square meter of ground.
In the Mantaro Valley, I encountered individuals raising seed-
lings in Hualhuas and nearby Sanno (Fig. 14). The seedlings were pri-
marily for anticipated planting on the person's own land, although
a surplus would be available for sale to neighbors. One nursery in
a walled garden consisted of a 1.2 by 6 meter bed containing several
thousand seedlings. Irrigation water was available. The soil was a
mixture, in situ, of clayey red soil and black soil from above 4,000
meters elevation on the puna. Puna soil is black because of a high
Figure 12. SMALL-SCALE NURSERY OPERATION, TITICACA LITTORAL.
These men near Huancane speak little Spanish. However, their
expanding eucalypt plantings will eventually draw them into the
regional cash economy.
Figure 13. LILLIPUTIAN SCALE FORESTRY. The old man is indi-
cating the first leaves of sprouting eucalypts. His land base
is extremely limited and his forestry practices are in harmony.
*;r, v ;. .
.~ \^^ '
content of unoxidized organic material, and often carbon staining,
resulting from frequent burns of the overlying grass. The bulk of the
plants were destined for bare root planting, although a few seedlings
were pricked out (transplanted) into evaporated milk cans. Many of
the seedlings in the bed were becoming too large for transplanting.
This was due to the prevalent idea that big seedlings are stronger.
The owner showed me some very poor looking transplants in excess of
one meter in height. Oversized seedlings in the bed suffer severe root
damage when dug up or pulled. Those remaining in containers too long
develop badly deformed roots which do not take well when they are fin-
ally planted out.
Serranos prefer to buy seedling in small lots from a neighbor
rather than in bundles of 100 at the Sunday market for the following
1) They may buy exactly the number they require the day and
hour the holes are dug and rain has fallen.
2) They may dig the seedlings from the bed themselves, taking
personal care that the roots are not damaged.
3) If some replanting is necessary, it is a simple matter to
At Sincos, across the Valley from Hualhuas, I came upon a very
indigenous-looking Serrano lady producing and selling canned eucalypt
seedlings (Fig. 15). Locally gathered seeds were planted in the top
of a 5 gallon lard tin and later transplrnted into evaporated milk cans.
She bought the cans in Jauja for four-tenths of a cent and sold the
plants for 4 cents. She had no other costs.
The engineer of the .'iuquiyauyo hydroelectric plant, not far
from Sincos, raises eucalypt seedlings for sale as a sideline. He
Figure 14. A EUCALYPT NURSERY IN THE MrNTArO VALLEY. The size
of this seedbed is much larger than those found near Lake Titicaca.
There is more land and the environment is more permissive. Most
of the seedlings are too large for optimum transplanting, but
many Serranos equate size with viability. From this plot are sold
not only eucalypts, but gladiolas and carnations as well.
Figure 15. EUCALYPT SSEDLINGS IN CANS. The production of sccdlings
represents a low overhead home industry for this family.
plants seeds in boxes which he keeps at the bottom of a three-meter-
deep shaft. The rapid stem development of the seedlings as they grow
toward the light is amazing. He gave me a year-old seedling in a small
milk can that stood higher than my head. The seedlings had a stronger
apical dominance than brnnchy normal plants and a completely different
physiognomy, It would be worth a small experimental effort to see
whether or not the desirable characteristics persist after several
years' growth. The taller seedling would have greater success in com-
peting for light on ieed-grown sites, but would be more susceptible to
Nursery techniques; Miraflores
In Miraflores, eucalypt seedlings are grown to sell. Within
the village there are 30 separate nurseries averaging 14,000 plants
each. The inhabitants have been raising seedlings for "a long time."
No amount of rephrasing the question could elicit a more exact answer
as to precisely when they entered the nursery industry.
A composite of the cultivation techniques was gained from ques-
tioning six growers encountered on their land. The nurseries are all
located within a dispersed village of houses surrounded by minute fields.
Each field is bordered by eucalypts and queiua. Many of the fields had
once been used for alfalfa, as evidenced by the gravel separators spaced
every meter to guide the irrigation water. All sites could be irrigated.
In November, the "harvest" of eucalypt seedlings was just beginning, to
be sold in the market during the planting season. Judging from the
average size of the seedlings, they had been planted between April and
July (Fig. 16). Seeds are broadcast over the bed and then covered with
Figure 16. MIRAFLORES, A VILLAGE SPECIALIZING IN EUCALYPT
PRODUCTION. This man, along with his neighbors, produces
seedlings for sale in the Sunday market.
straw for three weeks. The straw, they said, protects the seeds from
the birds. Probably more important is the protection afforded to the
germinating seeds from frost and desiccation. Two of the correspond-
ents said they fertilize the seedlings with guinea pig dung or guano
de isla when they reach a height of four centimeters. One weeds his
beds four times during the growing period. The beds are irrigated
every eight days during the dry season.
One small nursery was somewhat different from the others.
The owner, a genial old drunk, his mouth indelibly stained by coca,
did his best to answer my questions. Iis small piece of land was a
chaotic mess of onions, eucalypt seedlings, gladiolas, and scattered
vegetables. He also had 15 eucalypt scedlLn,;; in individual evaporated
milk cans, also two cracked pots and a rusty pan, sprouting dozens of
small seedlings. Several chile peppers were in larger cans.
A rough comparison of value between potatoes and eucalypt seed-
lings was given by a man who had approximately equal areas of each,
side by side. One plot would yield a sack and a half of potatoes,
worth about $12.1 The other, with 3,500 eucalypt seedlings, would
bring about $17. When one compares the advantages and disadvantages
of the two crops, it is easy to see why he planted a little of both.
The eucalypt requires little labor, is disease free, and frost resist-
ant. It can command a higher price per hectare and brings in cash dur-
ing the planting season, when no other crops are being harvested. The
major drawback is the limited market, which can easily be saturated,
resulting in no sales at all. Potatoes are a sure source of income,
and, more important, can be eaten if they cannot be sold profitably.
They do require more care and can be ruined by blight, hail, or frost.
In a neighboring village, separated from Miraflores by a creek,
I found no eucalypt seedbeds. When asked why, a resident replied that
"no es costumbre" (it is not customary). When pressed, he pointed out
that land is scarce and all of it is needed for food crops. Also,
people sometimes carry seedlings to market and sit around all day with-
out selling any, thus wasting the day. FHis first reply probably came
closer to answering why no one plants eucalypts.
The Sunday market in Rlancayo is the sales center of eucalypt
seedlings for the entire upper Mantaro Valley. The seedlings come
mainly from the village of Miraflores, although I encountered some
women from nearby Sapallanga and Viques. During the planting season,
these specialists in eucalypts offer seedlings at the major weekly
markets throughout the Valley, A back street in the market area is
lined with hawkers of a variety of plants. Ornamentals make up the
majority of the offerings. Herbs, chile peppers, and fruit trees are
represented. Eucalypt seedlings appear in great abundance at the
beginning of the rainy season. The setting out of eucalypts in the
field is closely tied to the seasonal rainfall cycle, while the various
dooryard plants may be maintained by hand watering.
Most of the plants are sold bare-rooted, though peppers are
always sold in cans. Like the rest, bunches of eucalypt seedlings are
displayed in the broiling sun. They are constantly tettcd, but wilt
sets in by mid-morning. A bunch sells for 35 to 75 cents, dopending
on the size, season, and time of day. Occasionally, seedlings are
sold in cans or plastic sacks for one-third of a cent apiece, though
larger trees may run double or triple that price.
The Serrano tends to make his selection on the basis of height.
In a nursery bed, seedlings planted at the same time may vary from sev-
eral centimeters to almost a meter in height. The tallest ones are
the dominant, but they are so developed that they do not withstand the
trauma of transplanting as well as the smaller seedlings. The seed-
lings sold in the Sunday market are ripped from the ground by the
thousands and sold in bunches. Those that develop slowly are pulled
at a later time. The buyer never knows whether he is getting this
year's vigorous growth or last year's laggards. The tenfold differ-
ence in price per plant is indicative of the higher survival rate of
the seedlings sold in receptacles. The low sales volume of the more
reliable and more costly seedlings attests to the lack of purchasing
power of the agriculturists. If bare-rooted seedlings are purchased
early in the day, quickly planted out, and regularly watered, the sur-
vival rate is reasonably high. The hacendados often come directly to
the Miraflores producers and buy large quantities of seedlings, which
their men carefully select and remove from the beds for planting at
the most auspicious time.
E. globulus is rustic enough to stand up under the most brutal
peasant silvicultural practices. The following account from Ethiopia
attests to the species' remarkable ability to survive.
The severe climatic conditions and the crude silvicultural
techniques of the peasants prevent the introduction of desir-
able saw-log species. E. globulus appears to be the only species
which can be grown under such adverse conditions. . Bcfore
the onset of the wet season of June to August, groups of peasants
armed with 2.5 meter poles fitted with iron tridents (two men to
a pole) lever out huge clods of soil to leave a giant's cultiva-
tion marks along the hillsides. .. Meanwhile, the peasants
have roughly dug makeshift seed beds adjacent to the banks of
a gully accessible to water. They smother these with the large
seeds of E. globulus, and cover them with a mulch of reeds laid
transversely as a mat. The seeds are not washed away by the rain,
hail, or bad watering. The resulting crop consists of dense
thickets of weak-stemmed cccdlings. These are not dug up in
the usual way; they are pulled up by hand in bunches. To com-
pensate for a 66 percent mortality in planting, three sccc'llngce
are placed in each planting hole, the holes being 1 meter apart.
So far as is known, E. globulus is the only tree which can be
grown by this technique.
Although the principal areas of E. globulus are concentrated
in Addis Ababa, where the wood is used for poles, fuel, and con-
struction purposes, every village has its own grove of ecualypts
from which peasants obtain the stickwood for building their huts
and the leaves for cooking.14
According to producers from Miraflores, their market for bare-
root seedlings is decreasing. I can see several possible reasons.
After some 80 years of planting eucalypts almost exclusively on per-
iodically irrigated sites, the Serrano has, in the last decnde, begun
to plant where the only water comas from seasonal rains. This change
in pattern places a premium on the survival qualities of the canned or
bagged seedlings which can survive in dryer soil subject to vagaries
of the weather. How in this demand being met? A few are sold in the
Sunday market. Much of the production is in the hands of small oper-
ators in the villages. A number of farmers grow their own plants in
seedbeds, cans, boxes, old pots, or any other handy receptacle (Fig. 17).
During the last three years, the more aggressive activity of the Forest
Service in seeking contracts to plant lands has had significant second-
ary effects. Their action has served to advertise both the potential
of planting bagged seedlings on poor sites, and the availability of
such seedlings at half the open mnrlkct price at the Forest Service
is a potter
PORTABLE SEED BEDS. The grower of these seedlings
in addition to being an agriculturist. Eucalypts he
provide cash income and fuel for his kiln.
Just north of Iuancayo is a private nursery denling principally
in ornamentals with a sideline of eucalyptus in small plastic bags iden-
tical to those used by the Forcst Servire. These bags are sold in
a variety store in lHuancayo for about 20 cents per hundred. The seed-
lings are sold for one-third of a cent apiece, comparable to the Sunday
market price, with a replacement guarantee that they grow.
The availability of cans for planting seedlings is an interest-
ing sidelight. People living near the subsistence level are not gen-
erally consumers of canned goods, but in Peru, evaporated milk seems to
be an exception. Leche Gloria (similar to PET milk) is consumed every-
where, but the cans do not litter the landscape. They are collected
for various domestic uses, including the starting of eucalypt seedlings.
Until a few years ago, the Forest Service used cans in the Sierra and
they still do so in Arequipa.
Nursery techniques; Forest Service
The Forest Service is committed to a major nursery and affor-
estation program in the Sierra, at least for as long as AID backing
persists. Funds are appropriated on an annual basis* It is quite
conceivable and highly probable that full responsibility for eucalypt
seedling production will eventually again devolve upon the various
types of private nurseries. The Forest Service's heart and limited
funds are pinned to the development of forestry and wood product indus-
tries in the Peruvian Selva.
Nurseries of the Forest Service throughout the sierra employ
basically the same techniques with some local innovations rand adapta-
tions to the materials of the region. Several deprrtmcnts may be
served by one nursery, but the radius of operations is seldom more than
50 kilometers, because of strategic nursery location in the cultivat-
able basins of the Sierra. The orientation and scale of operations
described below are applicable only to current Forest Service nursery
activities. Practices in the Mantaro and Urubamba Valleys are suf-
ficiently similar to be included in the same section.
In the Mantaro Valley, seeds are collected by nursery person-
nel from selected trees near the nursery, according to one correspond-
ent. Another intimated that selection is based more on convenience
than on the characteristics of the seed-bearing tree. In Cuzco, there
is no seed selection, only collection. There, the Forest Service pays
37 cents for a grain sack of pods or $3.80 per kilogram of seed. It is
incidental activity; no one is a professional seed gatherer. (This is
in contrast to Mexico, where the Forest Service employs people to col-
lect pine seeds.) Seeds are often gathered from low branching or
felled trees which can only perpetuate the heterogeneous characteris-
tics of the eucalypt.
Seedbeds are made by turning over and raking smooth the in situ
soil and then covering with a 2- to 3-centimnter-thick layer of sand
on which the seeds are broadcast. After seeding, a thin layer of sand
is sprinkled on the bed followed by a layer of grain straw. The straw
conserves moisture while protecting the first emerging cotyledons from
the intense isolation and frequent frost. Ten to 15 days after seed-
ing, the straw is removed to prevent dc'nge to the emergent plants and
replace., with arches of retama (a branchy shrub, Sparceum) stuck in the
ground on either side, or straw on a rack. Strnot is still scattered
directly over the plants where racks are not installed. This practice
is frowned upon because of the aforementioned frequent damage to the
After 45 to 50 days, when the seedlings show four leaves and
are about 6 centimeters high, they are ready for pricking out. The
polyethlcne bag used measures 10 by 14 centimeters flat and when
soil-filled stands 6 centimeters in diameter and 11 centimeters high.
The bags are filled with a mixture of approximately 65 percent sandy
soil, 10 percent clayey soil, and 25 percent decomposed organic matter.
Deviations from this ideal include more clayey soil and less organic
The transplanting operation is something of an Incaic quilting
bee* The work in no way interferes with the animated gossip in Quechua
carried on among the Indian ladies. The moist soil is tamped into the
bags in one operation and then the seedlings are poked into the bags
with a piece of wire on a stick, A fast and taciturn woman can plant
up to 3,000 in one day. Doubling of the root and the inclusion of air
pockets are causes of mortality during these steps.
A system now being employed in the Mantaro Valley involves
placing the soil-filled bags directly in the beds where transplanting
then takes place* The men crouch on a board across the bed where they
first open a planting hole in each bag. They then place a seedling
upright in the hole and squeeze the earth around it. Whether or not
this system is more efficient or reduces mortality has yet to be deter-
mined. Seedlings in the beds are watered by flooding from the irriga-
tion system as needed, usually every two days during the dry season.
The period immediately after transplanting is the most critical
in the life of the seedling. Shading was accomplished originally by
scattering straw directly in the newly bagged seedlings. However,
it was found that a careless workman could kill entire beds of plots
by piling on too much straw and/or leaving it on too long. Another
system used in Cuzco is to stick fan-like branches of retama in the
ground forming an arbor over the bed. This combines the advantages
of an inexpensive material and the avoidance of direct contact of the
shading materials with the plants. The Concepcidn nursery in the
Mantaro Valley now uses screened frames. Straw is spread on these to
achieve the desired degree of light penetration (Fig. 18).
After three months, all shade may be removed. At three to
four months superphosphate and urea are mixed in water and applied
with a sprinkling can. Seedlings require six to eight months to reach
the height of 20 to 30 centimeters suitable for planting out in the
The nursery at ConcepciTn has a total of 75 seedbeds and 800
beds for bagged plants. Ideal production is two million seedlings,
but frost, negligence and poor personnel supervision combine to reduce
output to one million or less. In August 1966, temperatures of -70C.
resulted in the loss of some three million seedlings at various stages
of development, partially because there was no adequate system of pro-
tection against an almost inevitable seasonal phenomenon. Only a quar-
ter of the seedlings for which contracts have been signed for the 1966-
67 planting season are available.
Figure 18. SHADING OF NEULY TRANSPLAITED SEEDLINGS. In the Forest
Service nursery in Concepcion, screens over sunken beds prevent
direct contact between seedlings and shading material. In the
background are high shade racks for intermediate sized seedlings.
Dense rows of Cypressus and eucalyptus provide some high shade,
Zrost protection, and humidity control.
The women working in the nursery earn 55 cents a day plus Food
for Peace for each member of their family. The food is distributed
every 15 days, barring frequent delays in delivery from Lima. Some of
the workers would prefer more money instead of the food, as they are
unfamiliar with the foodstuffs.15
There are no data on expenditures in producing a seedling ready
for planting in the field. However, seedlings are valued at $0.185
apiece. The price is used in contracts with communities and for sales
to individuals at the nursery. This is considered a below cost rifrlre
because the overhead in equipment and Food for Peace provided by the
Alliance for Progress is not completely accounted for.
The Forest Service has compiled estimates for establishing a
one-hectare plantation of 2,500 trees (at two-by-two-meter spacing),
ESTIMATED COST OF rTABLISITIIG A ONE-IIECTARE EUCALYPT PLANTATION
r .... ....Pe
. ... - -- -, . ..,, ...., . ,. i' ; ..
Engcd seedlings at the nursery
Labor (60 days at 37 cents per day)
Transportation to planting site (average)
Fertilizer and insecticide
Depreciation on tools
Source: Servicio Forestal y de Caza, Unpublished Cost Cstimates for
Establishing a Eucalypt Plantation, 1965.
Replanting of 30 percent mortality and a ccding during the
first year add another $30 to the entire cost. Wages are paid out of
the loan to the community to members of the community and are therefore
about half those ordinarily paid for similarvork.
Nursery techniques; Titicaca Littoral
The nursery at Camacani near Puno is the fief of Ingeneiro
Fidel Flores, an agronomist at the Universidad Teenica del Altiplano.
His many years in the area antedate the nursery as well as the Forest
Service. The techniques used in the nursery are somewhat different
from those used elsewhere in Peru, because of the exigencies of the
high altitude location and a lack of close liaison with the Forest
Service in Lima. The Alliance for Progress reforestation program is
not in operation in the Department of Puno*
Beds are seeded in January in order to have tell-developed
seedlings for the following December. Festuca (a wire grass) is spread
over the bed for three weeks or until three leaves are sho-:-ing, This
grass is superior to grain straw because it is lighter and less likely
to damage eneirginr seedlings.
For protection against the ever-present danger of frost and
violent hailstorms, mats of totora grass may be rolled out on 30 centi-
meter high frames over each bed. Seedlings are transplanted to plastic
bags when ten centimeters high, almost double the height prescribed in
the nurseries of lower valleys. Ingeneiro Flores claims the larger
seedlings are more resistant to frost and desicration than the normal.
The bags are also twice as large as those used elscOhchre in Peru. This
allows more root room and a better moisture reserve when planted on
drought sites, The greater space and handling expenditure is not
critical because of the low volume of production, some 20,000 seed-
Nursery techniques; Arequipa
In Arequipa, there is a limited demand for eucalypt seedlings.
Rainfall is sporadic and insufficient to support eucalypts without
regular wateringg Scarce irrigation water and intensive croppin cre-
ate an environment inauspicious for plantation forestry. Plantins
are scattered along field borders, occasionally as a desultory effort
to create a windbreak. The best trees are found in parks and as shndc
trees around homes. The Forest Service is planting a five-hectare
piece of municipal land saturated by sewer overflow.
The small nursery maintained by the Forest Service is an
extremely neat and efficient operation producing annually some 20,000
seedlings of predominantly E. globulus with some Cypressus and Pinus
radiata. Evaporated milk cans are usre exclusively for this planting.
They are quite adequate for the scale of operations. The sup-ly of
cans is inexhaustible because there is a Ltche Gloria milk cannery in
Seedling selection, protection, and management
Selection. If a seedling survives, it is selected for replant-
ing in the field. This technique, though unscientific, has some valid-
ity in the context of the Sierra. Frost and desiccation by the tropical
sun at high altitude eliminate the weak. By planting on marginal lands,
the Forest Service places seedlings under the additional stress of
moisture and nutrient deficiency, as wvll as lack of root space in
superficially decomposed bedrock.
It is unfortunate that no effort is being made to improve the
eucalypt in the highlands. Through its planting program, the Forest
Service has the means of getting better trees to large numbers of dis-
persed people. Suitable land is in short supply and the need for stood
is great; the more reason to optimize yield. The eucalypt, once
planted, becomes a semipermanent feature of the landscape; each time
it is cut, it sprouts from the stump producing a tree of exactly the
same characteristics, good or bad, as its predecessor.
Protection. Possibly as prejudicial to seedling survival as
drought, frost, and hail are livestock; particularly cattle. Animals
roam free in the outfields, 'indifferently tended by a woman more intent
on her spinning than on keeping animals away from a lonely row of seed-
lings* In the past, the practice twas to plant eucalyptus in the fields
lying among the houses* Here, the fields were often walled-in with
adobe and less used for grazing* Now, much of the planting occurs on
the open cropland and communal grazing land* Some form of protection
is needed. Row plantings in field borders are not economical to fence,
but where a piece of land is planted solidly to trees, a fence encloses
the maximum number of trees per meter of wire used* The plantations on
communal grazing land planted by the Forest Service are protected by a
Vigilante. His pay is included in the contract. These mefi'd6 -not sdem
too highly motivated by their work, but it does not matter. The slopes
chosen for planting eucalyptus are so badly eroded that there is little
grass to attract a hungry goat, much less a cow.
Where trees are in single rows, people trust to fate or con-
trive some device to protect each tree individually. Around Lake
Titicaca, few seedlings are planted at a time, the people build rock
cairns to protect them from grazing animals (Fig. 19). The rocks hold
heat and may afford some measure of frost protection. Near Chac-an, in
the Department of Cuzco, adobe bricks are piled around seedlings with
the same dual protection obtained. FAO mentions a somewhat simplified
system whereby three stones are laid around the newly planted seedling.
These stones are supposed to hold soil moisture, suppress weed competi-
tion, and possibly discourage a grazing animal which bumps its nose on
Near Miraflores, I found well-developed seedlings a meter or
more tall with spiny branches tied to the stem (Fig. 20). The spines
were quite possibly placed there to discourage the casual tree-snapping
juvenile delinquent as well as livestock* This was pointed out on sev-
eral occasions as a serious problem. (Whether it is done vindictively
ngninst an individual or just out of general human cussedness, I do not
know.) I was amazed to see destructiveness where people have so little.
At a primitive settlement above Huancayo, bare-rooted seedlings
were planted under live thorn bushes. Very few survived. Competition
for root space and moisture may have had something to do with their
A common technique among the farmers in the Mantaro Valley is
to plant the seedling at the bottom of a 20- to 30-centimeter-deep hole,
The purpose is not clear, although they say it makes the tree grow
better. Possibly a more humid microclimate is maintained around the
Figure 19. SEEDLING PROTECTION: ROCK CAIRNS. Rocks piled around
affords efficient protection to the seedlings from both animals
and competing vegetation. Rocks also hold heat which may provide
some frost protection.
Figure 20. SEEDLING PROTECTION: SPINES. Although rocks abound,
they are generally stream laid round ones which are difficult to
pile. Once a tree attains a height of about five meters, it is
resistant to all but the heaviest frost or cow.
seedling at the early stages of growth. However, the tree starts off
at a disadvantage in competing with overhead grass and weeds. The hole
may protect the seedling from cattle hooves, but also can break the
leg of a valuable animal.
Management. The eucalypt is unique among the trees used in
plantation forestry. Its ability to coppice is an asset requiring
special treatment to maximize return. The growth of the coppice is
more vigorous than the original tree, reaching an equal or greater
volume in less than two-thirds the time. This is because the already
well-developed root system of the tree coppiced is capable of reach-
ing and using more soil nutrients necessary to the above ground develop-
ment of the new trunk or trunks.
A stand potentially will produce three to five cuttings from
the original root system before coppice failures render replanting
advisable.17 The timing of cutting cycles and the number of stems
harvested from each stump are determined by the prevailing growth rate
and the end product desired, be it firewood, posts, or poles. The
best method of maximizing the return from the coppice has been short
cycle clear cutting for pulp and firewood, as practiced in Brazil.
When a stand is periodically thinned, the coppices are dominated by
the remaining trees. The rapid volumetric productivity of the coppice
is thus lost. Thinning should not be practiced when the desired return
from the stand is a high volume of wood. Only when large trees for
poles or saw timber are required should thinning be practiced.
A possible method utilizing rapid growth of the coppice in the
eventual production of large timbers is the following:
1) Clear cut the stand when growth rate begin to taper off
due to crowding.
2) Leave two or three trunks of the coppice.
3) When the coppices have reached minimal marketable size and
are beginning to crowd, cut all trunks on 50 percent of the
stumps and all but the dominant trunk on the other half.
4) Kill back any sprouting from clean cut stumps.
5) The stand should be open enough to graze a fairly high den-
sity of cattle while waiting for the remaining trees to
reach large pole or saw-log size.
In Peru, lrrge scale plantings are not common. Most wood is
supplied from row plantings along field borders, roadntiyn, canals, or
gullies. Though not the most efficient use of land area for silvicul-
ture, it circumvents the problem of crowding in long cycle management
for poles or saw timber. In two meter or less spacing along a fence
row, sufficient sunlight penetrates from both sides to allow large single
or multiple trunks to develop without the domination that would normally
occur in solid stands I know of no experimental evidence to support
this observation, but it is a common sight to see roxw of tall tree" so
large that it is difficult to pass between them.
Utilization of the Eucalypt
Within Peru, the eucalypt is a major commercial wood. In 1964
it comprised 62 percent of the wood cut and 49 percent of the value of
all wood products.18 Essentially all of this three million dollars
worth of eucalyptus remained in the Sierra, being purchased by the min-
ing companies. Not entering the statistics were the thousands of truck-
loads of leaves and branches at $15 per load used for fuel, or the poles
and beams used in the new housing during the year.
The relative value of the eucalypt harvest forcefully brings
home the lesson of Peru's geography. Roughly 80 square kilometers of
eucalypts strategically located near markets produced a value equal to
that of some 700,000 square kilometers of Amazonian forest. Because of
the inaccessibility of the latter resource beyond the Andes, Peru is
forced to import wood at an annual loss of some 4.8 million dollars in
The mining industry is the prime mover in the eucalypt trade in
the Sierra. In the Mantaro Valley, about 80 percent of the wood cut
goes to the mines.20 The Cerro de Pasco Copper Corporation, the major
consumer, obtains about half of its wood supply from the Valley. Also
in competition are several other smaller mining companies operating in
the central Andes. Before the mines began buying wood, there was an
adequate if not excessive supply of timber for local needs. This is
evidenced by the great diameters of stumps seen in and around the vil-
lages. Apparently no pressing need for wood dictated a shorter cutting
cycle. Today, very few trees are seen with diameters even approaching
Acceptance of the eucalypt by the Cerro Corporation was a cru-
cial factor in the buildup of pressure on the existing wood supply,
naturally creating the incentive to plant eucalyptus.
The early history of the use of Eucnlyptus by the Corporation
is hazy. It is recorded that Jersey (Tripod) Taylor, a railway
engineer in the employ of the Corporation, advocated the use of
Eucalyptus in 1909, but received little encouragement at the time.
Going off to World War I and returning in 1921, he contracted the
cutting of some Eucalyptus in the Huancayo Valley and sold it to
the Corporation.. ., During the period 1921-1939, the great
aversion to the use of Eucalyptus was due to its weight and many
workers refused to handle it. Gradually, reluctant mine super-
intendents agreed to use the Eucalyptus as stull material only.
They insisted that their framed timber be Douglas fir. As late
as 1937, certain superintendents were still refusing to use
anything but Douglas fir in their mines. Then in 1939 came the
disturbance in the Pacific. Shipping was greatly disrupted.
The Pacific Northwest, home of the Dou.1as fir and the area from
which the Corporation received its timber supplies, was more or
less isolated from the shipping lanes by the grcnt lack of ships.
The Corporation, faced with the problem of an uncertain timber
supply from the Pacific Northwest and realizing that a crisis
was at hand, placed a large order for lumber, but simultaneously
converted to local Eucalyptus for mine timbers. Eucalyptus has
been used ever since.21
The year 1939 marks the transition from a buyers to a sellers
market; from reserves and sustained yield to incipient shortage. From
study of the stands, it is apparent that a considerable expansion of
eucalypt planting took place on the irrigated lands near the villages
in response to the increased demand. These plantings were not adequate
for sustained yield. The Cerro Corporation has lowered its minimum
diameter at breast height (dbh) requirement from 12 to 8 inches in order
to compete with other wood buyers. Critical shortages are developing
in the supply of heavy timbers. In the last ten years, another wave
of planting has occurred on the less favorable nonirrigated sites.
This wood has not yet reached cutting size.
Below 12 inches diameter, wood is used as round timbers. The
12-and 24-inch diameters (without bark) allow the most efficient pro-
duction of I and 4, respectively, 8 by 8 inch beams out of a single
log. The 8 by 8 inch beams of varying lengths are the basic members
used for roof supports after ore has been removed from a tunnel. The
larger diameters are also milled into lumber of whatever dimensions
are required by the mines. Branches and twisted pieces are cut up
for firewood. Most of the mining towns are well above the timber line
and bitterly cold, so firewood is an indispensable commodity supplied
by the companies.
The Cerro Corporation has relatively few plantations on its
own land. The two largest, 500,000 trees at Hudanuco and 55,000 trees
Huancayo, are only now reaching usable size. This is easy to explain.
Only 30 years ago did it become generally known that Peru could supply
adequate wood. Not until 1939 did it become necessary to do so. In
1965, the Cerro Corporation had half a million hectares of land, used
principally as a food supplying base for a mining population of some
20,000 people. Most of this land is too high for trees. More signif-
icant is that this land is now in almost constant peril of confiscation
by agrarian reform minded elements in the Peruvian government. Two
hundred thousand hectares were on the verge of expropriation by the end
of 1965* With this sort of political climate, the Cerro Corporation is
loath to plant trees for someone else to harvest.
The fear of expropriation pervades the thinking of holders of
large tracts, either corporately or individually. It is a major deter-
rent to the development of large scale plantation forestry. Social
considerations aside, the owners of latifundia are in a far better posi-
tion to produce wood than the Serrano peasant. They have relatively
more land; hunger does not dictate the use of all land for subsistence.
The owner gen-rnlly has more land than he has capital to intensively
exploit. Rational land use planning would indicate that plantation
forestry is the best use of some classes of land. It is also compat-
ible with absentee ownership. After a plantation is established,
minimal care is required. No large labor force need be maintained
with the associated social problems. About ten years are required for
trees to reach marketable size and they continue to increase in value,
though at a gradually decreasing rate, over 30 or more years.
Wood is acquired from hundreds of producers. Some may sell
only ten trees, others thousands. The transaction either begins by
a landowner coming into the Cerro Corporation's office in Huancayo,
offering trees for sale, or a buyer making the initial contact in the
field. The latter is preferred by the Serranos because they feel they
have a psychological advantage in the bargaining. After the initial
contact, a trained man calculates the value of the stand. The diameter
of each tree is measured with a tape at breast height, and the height
is estimated to where the trunk necks down to four inches in diameter.
These data are recorded and the tree chalked with a consecutive number.
The timber cruisers claim they can estimate volume within a couple of
percentage points of the measured quantity. Back at the office, this
data is converted to metric tons, the common unit of measure for round-
After the computations are made, a contract is negotiated with
the landowner. Often as not, the more financially astute woman is on
hand for the bargaining sessions. In voluble and unseemly shrill
Quechua-Spanish, she haggles over every detail until the contract is
finally signed. Price per ton is determined by the size of the tree.
Small pole sized trees are worth $5.50 per metric ton. The largest
trunks sell for $8 a metric ton. The price may vary depending on the
current needs of the mines and competition with other buyers. To
assure a supply of wood, the Cerro Corporation formerly made contracts
some years before the trees matured, but breach of contract has been so
common that the practice has been discontinued, except in the case of
some trusted larger landowners.
A peak of activity in woodcutting is reached during the dryer
months between Tune and October. This is the case for several reasons.
Roads or tracks Icnd tn- to stands are at times impassable due to rain.
The xoodcutters may have their own land to plant and tend. Also, the
farmer does not care to have trees crashing down among his groTing
The logging operation is distinctive. Teams of ten or more
men with axe and crosscut saw arrive at the locale in a battered flat-
bed truck. An agile trepador, or climber, shinnies up the trunk to
attach a guide rope in the uppermost branches. With his companions on
the ground holding taut, he slides down the rope with nothing more to
protect his hands than a wad of leaves. The tree is then felled on
a predetermined spot and sand into desired lengths. The lo.gs are
rolled up an inclined plane of poles, and aboard the truck by dint of
7ood from the Mantaro Valley is brought in trucks to one of
two patios, or assembly yards, in Haancayo or Jauja, where it is
corted and stschcd. Consignments of roundwood are then sent on flat-
cars to the mines.
Mantaro Valley. Sawmills in the Mantaro Valley sell the large
part of their lumber to the mining companies. The leading mill in
Huancayo sells 70 percent of its production to the Compagnie des Mines
de fuaron. The mines use principally 8 by 8 inch beams for which they
pay 6.3 cents a boardfoot. The rest is sold locally for 8.5 cents a
boardfoot. The mines pay lower prices because they purchase carload
lots and accept lower quality, split, and warped wood.
The mill observed consumes an average of 20 tons of logs per
day. Supply of wood comes from independent operators who work in
teams buying and cutting trees. On arrival, the loaded truck is driven
on scales which automatically print out the weight. The truck is
weighed again after offloading and the agreed upon price per ton is
paid. The greener and heavier the wood, the better for the loggers
A living tree could conceivably be sold as lumber the same day; curing
A burning sawdust and scrap pile, so common to North American
mill yards, is absent in the Sierra. Utilization of the logs is com-
plete. The lumber is used for all types of rustic construction. Ends
of a meter in length, are sawed into billets. These are shade dried
and turned down on an automatic copying lathe to make various types of
tool handles. Slabs are used for pigpens, in roofing as a substratum
below the tile, and for firewood. Ends, bark, and odd scraps are sold
directly for firewood or reduced to charcoal in pit kilns at the back
of the woodyard. All the sawdust is carried away for fuel in pottery
kilns or for use as a floor cleaner.
Department of Cuzco. Sawmilling is not as highly developed
an industry in the Department of Cuzco as in the Mantaro Valley. Con-
sumption by the mines amounts to only a few carloads of roun',^oo,!
per month. Neither the supply of saw timber nor the domestic demand
for lumber have been sufficient to cncourGc. development of sanailling.
It is probable that a large potential market for lumber exists, but
most hacendados are not interested. Much of the land now lying idle
would have been afforested by the astute Serrano of the Mantaro Valley.
Most of the lumber is produced using the archaic two-man rip
saw (Fig. 21). This technique was not observed anywhere in the Mantaro
Valley. There is one sawmill in the city of Cuzco, operated by a local
woodcutter. At the time I visited his mill, he was 100 kilometers down
the Urub.aba Valley, cutting a stand near Machu Picchu. In the sawmill,
he finishes hrnd mwn lumber or mills logs from stands near Cuzco. Lam-
bar is sold locally for construction or shipped to lumberyards in Puno.
As a sideline, the owner is experimenting with parquet flooring
manufacture. Treatment consists of boiling eucalypt billets in salt
water for three to four hours. Ten to 15 pounds of salt are dissolved
in 50 gallons of water. This treatment is supposed to prevent cracking
and warping.2 He has also treated wood by sonking, in old Inca salt
wells between Chacan and Urubamba.
The other sawmill encountered was on a hacienda in the Urubamba
Valley. The mill was built to exploit eucalypt forests planted over
a period of 40 years. The stands were the finest observed in Peru.
Limited natural regeneration from seed was occurring in the older stands.
A humid microclimate, protection from frost, and humus accumulation over
the years seem the best explanation for a phenomenon not observed else-
where in southern Peru. The hacienda was in no way typical of those in
the area. Forestry was the highest use of marginal land in an intensive