Thursday, April 14, 2011

Coffee Love in Asturias

Ready to pick! Sweetness. Oh! Coffee!

An assignment in Asturias took me by surprise when i learned that the town led by Mayor Adlawan is strongly promoting the planting of coffee with the hope that in the years to come it will prosper, an additional income for its thriving corn and rice production. (Mayor Adlawan's core in his administration is agriculture which boils down into food production.)

Anyways, we interviewed the agricultural technologist Mr. Roger Tapdasan and learned facts about coffee. A harvestable coffee is red. Before it ripens, it goes through the color green then it turns to yellow. The colored yellow fruits can be harvested but Roger said that some aren't really that ripen yet so its is best to wait when it turns red.

In 2007, they started the coffee plantation starting with the barangay captains who were also given proper training. In 2008, they purchased the planting materials in Tagum City.

Within 6 years since it started, Asturias aims to fill 500 hectares with coffee. As of press time, they have planted around 267 hectares already.

And so we visited Brgy. Lunas where Brgy Capt. Paulina Buhia shared to us his roasted coffee and took us to her coffee tress. She said she was one of the few who immediately heed the call of Mayor Adlawan to plant. She planted an initial of 400 trees and today she has around 1,000 coffee tress growing. She said it is best to strat plating on rainy season.

She waited for two years to harvest the first fruits and now she is enjoying her morning with freshly brewed coffee. 

To get to Asturias, take a V-Hire ride from Ayala terminal and drop-off at Poblacion. Tricyles will take you to Brgy. Lunas. Just tell the driver to drop you in the barangay captains house. 

(For those who wants to visit Asturias and inquire about their coffee mania. Call the LGU at 4649042/4649106.)

Seedlings located in the town's nursery

When it already ripe, the bean is squeezed out.
It is then dried, roasted and grounded.

Coffee for everyone right from the backyard.

The author, a coffee lover.

And to show more love, here are some intimate photos of my coffee plantation tour:

The flower doesn't necessarily mean that it will bear fruit. For Brgy. Capt. Paulina, she waited for two years.

Oh! If I could only bring it home.
Yellowish.. almost there!

Bundle of joy!

Now, it's ready to pick!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Escape to Malubog Lake

Unluckily, we get to the lake with a not so good condition.

Cruising and fishing right at the heart of the mining capital of Cebu? There is a secluded place in the middle of the thick vegetation and peaceful community in Toledo City that one must discover.

The Malubog Dam, or more popularly referred to as Malubog Lake, is located in Brgy. Climaco of the component city. This man-made lake is still part of and owned by Atlas Mining Cooperation, now under Carmen Copper Corporation. It was finished in 1970 and designed to hold 15 million cubic meters of water. In
fact, it is the largest privately-owned reservoir in the country.

For just P2,500, one can rent the floating restaurant for the day which can accommodate up to 50 people. Guests can also grill their fresh catch or just order fresh tilapia from a fish pen located in the middle of the lake.

The local government of Toledo City is still in the process of improving the amenities of the lake: adding a resort hotel, pasalubong center and more floating restaurants in the future. For the moment, it is the perfect time to enjoy raw adventure in its most basic state.

(Visit Malubog Dam, coordinate with the city’s tourism office or call the Mayor’s office at 3225748 and 3225625.)

Tilapia fish cage

Rain is about to come...

Fishing is one of the exciting activity one can do here in the lake.

A good catch! Will be eating tilapia later.

While they were busy shooting, Densho shared a lighter moment with me.

While they were busy rolling, i took my chance to pose for a souvenir photo.

Saging, init pa, anyone?

Relaxing! I'd love to read a book down here....

Malubog Dam

Inambakan Falls

Densho & Jessa couldn't help it. Nglumbag dagan paduing sa tubig!

GETTING THERE. A three-hour bus ride from the Cebu South Bus Terminal or a V-Hire ride from Citylink will take you to the town of Ginatilan. Drop-off point is in Brgy. Poblacion where one can find lots of motorcycle or habal-habal (for just P20-P30) that will take you to Brgy. Calabawan.

LOCATION. From the highway, Inambakan Falls is 3.9 km away. There is also a parking area for those who are bringing private vehicles. Enjoy a short trek to the falls passing by the river banks. Once you hear the cascading sound, behold, you are just a few feet away from the breathtaking Inambakan Falls.

FEATURE. The waterfalls drop to about 95ft and into an irresistible pool of blue water surrounded with moss-lined rock formations and lush vegetation. There is no entrance fee when you visit the place but for those who would like to rest, there are tree shades and stone formations where one can relax and admire nature. Shanties can also be found. Just remember not to leave any trash in the place.

The water source is from the river system coming from tributaries in the upland barangay of Mangaco.

To avoid crowd, it is best to visit the falls on weekdays. So for those who have wanted to bond with nature now that summer is here and school is over, take a quick trip to Ginatilan and a refreshing splash in Inambakan Falls!

The short walk to the falls is a piece of cake. 

Going back

Monday, April 04, 2011

First Sculpture Garden in The Philippines

(Right) Arch. Arsing playing with his dog as he welcomed us during our stay in his place. (Top Left) Gallery of his art works. (Left) Guestbook signed bu Billy Abueva declaring his garden as the first sculpture garden in the country.

Tongo, one of the mountainous barangay of the town of San Fernando, kept a garden declared by national artist Napoleon “Billy” Abueva in the guestbook of Arch. Arsenio “Arsing” Abella as the first sculpture garden of the Philippines.

It is located in a family-owned resort, SingLi Mountain Resort –combined name of Arsing and Lilia.

The couple lives in Tongo for 13 years now. They said that they searched for the perfect place where they could relax, unwind and retreat from the buzz of city life.

Arsing’s sculptures were made from scrap metals in abstract designs. His sculptures were his expression from the constraints of his work and freedom to do what he wants with no inhibitions.

“Kung nganong ingon ana ako style tungod man gud sa akong profession nga architect. First, ang architect daghan kaayog constraint, function…dili man ka kabuhat og ingon ani nga irrational or nothing, walay pulos,” said Arsing.

His guest house can also accommodate visitors on special arrangements. It also has a little art gallery where Arch. Arsing displays his paintings in watercolor.

Indeed, this town is not just proud of its sites, heritage and cultural traditions but as well as of the great people that made San Fernando what it is today.

(Left) A unique chair that has also been featured in a local newspaper. (Top Left) Me in a souvenir photo with his artworks. (Left) SingLi, the family's garden resort.

Inside the master's humble abode. Walay kalay kuryente coz he designed it to be sunlight friendly.

Posing with Arch. Arsing