Taiwanese entrepreneur plants trees out of love for the earth

'I wish that every surface of the earth where trees can be planted will be covered with trees': Lai Shui-ho

Lai Shui-huo (National Academy for Educational Research photo)

Lai Shui-huo (National Academy for Educational Research photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Lai Shui-huo (賴水和), chairman of Her Juen Industry Co. and owner of the Her Juen tree farm, was invited as the guest on the latest episode of the I-Fun Learning website's Celebrity Interviews unit.

Produced by the National Academy for Educational Research (NAER), I-Fun Learning provides resources for teachers and students. In this episode, Lai talked about the idea of caring for the earth by planting trees.

He said he bought a big plot of land on which to plant trees after 2001 to help combat global warming and that he felt the land where trees were grown was more solid.

To date, the Her Juen tree farm has planted trees for 18 years, Lai said, adding that Taiwan incense cedars account for the most trees in the farm, followed by stout camphor trees, indigenous cinnamon trees, aquilaria trees, ginkgoes, beeches, deciduous cypresses, autumn maples, and Japanese white pines.

He then proceeded to introduce several kinds of the trees he mentioned.

Lai said that after he began to plant trees, he would inspect other tree farms and learn from them. He told a story about an accident in 2008 that changed his life.

Once, he went to Dasyueshan to examine trees with a friend. However, on their way back, their car went off the road due to defective brakes and fell about five stories before landing on a tree. Below the tree was a 200-meter plummet to the ground, Lai added.

He said that when he realized the tree had saved his life, he made up his mind to plant trees to save the earth.

He went on to say that people thought he was insane because when he decided to do this, he did not give priority to his personal interests. However, Lai said he did not think that this made him crazy.

“I have a wish that I hope can be realized before I die. I wish that every surface of the earth where trees can be planted, including deserts, will be covered with trees,” he said.

An aerial view of the Her Juen tree farm. (National Academy for Educational Research photo)