Skip to Content


« Back to Glossary Index

**Group 1: Agroforestry Overview**

Agroforestry combines agricultural and forestry technologies for sustainable land-use systems.
– Trees are integrated with crops or pasture in agroforestry systems.
Agroforestry principles align with polyculture practices like intercropping.
– Multi-strata agroforests can contain hundreds of species.
– Nitrogen-fixing legumes restore soil nitrogen fertility in agroforestry systems.

**Group 2: Benefits of Agroforestry**

– Increases farm productivity, profitability, and soil structure.
– Reduces soil erosion and promotes carbon sequestration.
– Offers advantages over conventional agricultural and forest production methods.
– Supports biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services.
– Requires good farm management for maximizing benefits.

**Group 3: Environmental Impact and Goals**

– Contributes to carbon sequestration and climate change mitigation.
– Reduces pressure on primary forests by providing forest products.
– Helps smallholder farmers adapt to climate change.
– Enhances soil and water quality, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
– Improves food security and supports sustainable land management.

**Group 4: Agroforestry Practices**

– Alley cropping, silvopasture, windbreaks, forest farming, and riparian forest buffers.
– Utilizes shade crops like shade-grown coffee.
– Implements crop-over-tree systems for sustainable soil management.
– Incorporates intercropping and alley cropping for enhanced productivity.
– Benefits from windbreaks to reduce wind velocity and increase crop yields.

**Group 5: Case Studies and Resources**

– Includes case studies like Quesungual Slash and Mulch Agroforestry System.
– Showcases initiatives such as Evergreen Agriculture in Africa and Coffee agroforestry systems.
– Lists resources like the National Agroforestry Center and World Agroforestry Centre.
– Mentions organizations like CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees, and Agroforestry.
– Highlights global impact on carbon budgets, climate change mitigation, and livelihood improvement.

Agroforestry (Wikipedia)

Agroforestry (or agro-sylviculture) is a land use management system in which combinations of trees are grown around or among crops or pasture. Agroforestry combines agricultural and forestry technologies to create more diverse, productive, profitable, healthy, and sustainable land-use systems. Benefits include increasing farm profitability, reduced soil erosion, creating wildlife habitat, managing animal waste, increased biodiversity, improved soil structure, and carbon sequestration.

Alley cropping of maize and sweet chestnut, Dordogne, France
Maize grown under Faidherbia albida and Borassus akeassii near Banfora, Burkina Faso

Trees in agroforestry systems can produce wood, fruits, nuts, and other useful products. Agroforestry practices are especially prevalent in the tropics, especially in subsistence smallholdings areas, with particular importance in sub-Saharan Africa. Due to its multiple benefits, for instance in nutrient cycle benefits and potential for mitigating droughts, it has been adopted in the USA and Europe.

Agroforestry shares principles with polyculture practices such as intercropping but can also involve much more complex multi-strata agroforests containing hundreds of species. Agroforestry can utilise nitrogen-fixing legumes to restore soil nitrogen fertility. The nitrogen-fixing plants can be planted either sequentially or simultaneously.

Contour planting integrated with animal grazing on Taylor's Run farm, Australia
« Back to Glossary Index