Home General Knowledge GENERAL KNOWLEDGE BOOSTER : AGROFORESTRY
GENERAL KNOWLEDGE BOOSTER : AGROFORESTRY
Friday, 12 December 2014 05:50


GENERAL KNOWLEDGE BOOSTER

AGROFORESTRY

The land management patterns in India vary from region to region depending upon the land characteristics and the climate. Land use options that increase livelihood security and reduce vulnerability to climate and environmental change are necessary in today’s scenario.

Agroforestry is the system of land use that combines growing and raising of crops and/or livestock along with plants that belong to the forest. Agroforestry system holds promise to provide sustainable land management. The production of food grains, fruits, fodder, fuel-wood, timber etc. can be obtained simultaneously through this system. The total production-mix can be selected depending upon the area, climate, demand etc. Agro-forestry practices can increase farmer’s annual income.

VARIOUS FORMS OF AGROFORESTRY

• Agri-silviculture system: Concurrent production of agricultural corps & forest trees.

• Silvipastoral System: Forest based livestock production system where production of wood and rearing of domestic animals are done simultaneously.

• Agro-silvipastoral system: Land is utilized simultaneously for the production of agricultural crops, forest trees and rearing of domestic animals.

• Multipurpose forest tree production system: In this system trees are grown not only for wood but also for leaves, fruits, fodder and other useful by-products, including soil cover crops and intercropping with high value spices in man-made plantations.

BENEFITS OF AGROFORESTRY SYSTEM

A) Environmental benefits

• Reduction of pressure on natural forests.

• More efficient recycling of nutrients by deep rooted trees on the site.

• Better protection of ecological systems.

• Reduction of surface run-off, nutrient leaching and soil erosion through impeding effect of tree roots and stems on these processes.

• Improvement of microclimate, such as lowering of soil surface temperature and reduction of evaporation of soil moisture through a combination of mulching and shading.

• Increment in soil nutrients through addition and decomposition of litter fall.

• Improvement of soil structure through the constant addition of organic matter from decomposed litter.

B) Economic benefits

• Increment in the output of food, fuel wood , fodder, fertilizer and timber;

• Reduction in incidences of total crop failure, which is common to single cropping or monoculture systems;

• Increase in levels of farm income due to improved and sustained productivity.

C) Social benefits

• Improvement in rural living standards from sustained employ¬ment and higher income.

• Improvement in nutrition and health due to increased quality and diversity of food outputs.

• Stabilization and improvement of communities through elimination of the need to shift sites of farm activities.