Re: [pfaf] Re: temperate agroforestry practices
- I agree, I think alley cropping is about the only way that mixing cereal crops and trees can work on a larger scale (on an unmechanised scale, grains can be grown in clearings, or with scattered trees).
Alley cropping can be seen in France near Bezier airport. The trees do not look like fruit or nut trees though.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: 2/19/10 9:13 PM
Subject: [pfaf] Re: temperate agroforestry practices
Highly recommend checking out research going on at the University of Missouri Center for Agroforestry: http://www.centerforagroforestry.org
Alley cropping may be what you're looking at. They use combinations that would work in this climate. Basically you want trees with primarily deep roots and tap roots, so as not to compete with the crops. Certain trees work well with certain crops they have found.
The University of Guelph has also done some research on alley cropping and agroforestry, though I'm not sure how to get a hold of it. I did an alternative land use practices course through them that had a lot of good info in it that would be useful in planning agroforestry systems.
There is lots of good info on agroforestry in general from these sources.
There's a good DVD you can get on agroforestry practices as well, and numerous reports and other publications. Lots of stuff to wade through on the Center for Agroforestry's site. Silvopasture is something to look into regarding combining livestock. There are some good forage crops in the form of perennial herbaceous plants, shrubs, trees and vines. Tree plantings can significantly increase the survival rate of calves, and increase the growth rate of any livestock by providing forage and protection from the elements. I've heard them called outdoor barns.
I'll be experimenting a lot with alley cropping and other methods in the coming years, and would love to stay in touch. I'm in Peterborough, Ontario presently, starting an ecovillage with numerous fields to experiment with east of there about an hour. If you need help with sourcing as well, let me know.
--- In email@example.com, "jenniferpittet" wrote:
> Hi from Walters Falls, Ontario
> I'm looking for ideas about how to have tree crops and grain crops sharing the same land. I have a piece of land (about 15 acres) that I'd like to start re-foresting with a variety of tree species (and shrubs) but I don't want to kick off the farmer who is presently using the land for grains and hay. I think we could work together with both of our interests in mind.
> I see very little about agroforestry systems in this part of the world....central Ontario, Canada. Does anyone know of some practical ideas that could work...combining shrubs, trees, grains crops, and possible, eventually, some livestock.
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- ...many many examples of this sort of agroforestry in southern Europe where light levels are greater than the UK. Spain, Portugal etc etc. I observed in Portugal sweet chestnut trees with wheat interplanting ...as well as collective/village owned chestnut groves in many many areas.
- Here where I live (north of italy) until 30 years ago it was possible to see paddy fields surrounded by Mulberry (for silk production, alder trees (probably for N fixing), willows (for basketry, etc..) and other fruit bearing wild shrubs and small trees that eventually would feed fish living in the paddy. The trees were pollarded every 1 or 2 years depending the species. Closer to the farms, oaks were planted between the road and the paddy fields, and from those oaks the best Boletus Edulis (mushrooms) where thriving.Willows were grown every sometimes in between rows of vineyards to obtain branches to use as ropes to tie grape plants.bye!matteo