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After decades of being photographed by the British press in forests around the world, the Prince of Wales was left “bamboozled” after posing among some bamboo trees.
Charles stood in the forest at the request of a photographer from a national newspaper and, leaning against one of the trees, said: “I feel I need to hold on to something.”
The Sun’s veteran royal photographer Arthur Edwards had asked the prince to stand by the trees, and the royal quipped: “I feel slightly bamboozled.”
The heir to the throne was visiting an agroforestry site run by the Albertine Rift Conservation Society (Arcos), which has transformed local farmland in the Bugesera district of Rwanda by planting crops among trees.
He was shown around the three-acre plot by Dr Sam Kanyamibwa, executive director of Arcos, and the organisation’s director of community engagement Brigitte Kanyamugenge.
He also met Jean Bosco Murenzi, president of the Koimizanya co-operative, a group of 100 local farmers including 45 women which is working with Arcos to restore land on the edge of the wetland of Busegera Lake.
The partnership, which is supported by Rwanda’s government, has boosted income, yield and biodiversity in just six years since the project began in 2016.
The prince, a keen gardener and farmer himself, was fascinated by their work and stopped to admire saplings being grown in the centre’s tree nursery, including avocado, orange and lemon trees.
He was told how the co-operative had been very disorganised at the start, but was now much better organised and had a vision.
“And a lot more soil!” said Charles.
He added: “I’m fascinated by all these species; do they all have different properties? You have to protect them with shade.”