Chapter 13 : Agroforestry

Agroforestry is a long-standing (around 1300 years) practice of growing trees on farms for the benefit of the farm family (Sanchez, 1995). Over the past several decades, it has been promoted as a sustainable farming practice because it conserves soil and recycles nutrients. It also provides product diversification enhancing the economic resilience of farms.

Agroforestry has shown particular promise in arid climates providing drought resistance and ecosystem restoration (Bright, 2021). Careful selection of intercropping systems can significantly increase crop yields, and improve water use efficiency and soil quality. However, agroforestry, like other regenerative agriculture practices, requires considerable education of farmers to effectively manage a complex system (Rosati, 2021). For this reason, the adoption of agroforestry, despite its clear benefits, has been slow and requires decisive institutional and policy support (Ndlovu, 2021).