Agro forestry is the combining of trees within the pasture or arable fields. Since the 1940’s trees and hedge rows have been removed from agricultural land at an alarming rate. In Permaculture there is a great deal of evidence that diversity and productivity are greatest when we have an ‘edge effect’, trees and hedge rows produce that edge. We plan to combine our tree and hedge planting with our keyline water retention and distribution, this further increases the edge effect.
The benefits that we anticipate from planting new trees and hedges in rows with our pasture in between are:
- Wind Breaks – Providing shelter for our livestock.
- Increased aeration of soil – Tree roots go deeper and then they die this increase aeration
- Mineral accumulation – Trees bring valuable minerals to the surface
- Bio Diversity – Trees provide shelter and habitat for birds, small mammals and insects creating a more sustainable environment.
- Fodder for Animals – Many trees and hedges can be eaten by animals for food.
- Crop – Trees can provide fruits, nuts and berries for us and wildlife.
- Wood and biomass – The wood can be harvested for wood or fuel.