In November 2020 we planted our first 13 trees in our new agroforestry system. We have prepared this field over the last year with swales, fencing, cover crops and a pond and now they have 13 cool new trees! This field will have a forest planted that will offset carbon, create habitat for wildlife and provide food, medicine, timber, firewood and hay for animals.
Just at the most difficult financial time for us due to covid, Thierry Lustenberger helped us fund this project early this year. However, we decided to not paint the trees until now so we have the summer to plan, prepare, design and plant the trees at the idea time.
If you want to know more about this project jump to the bottom of pst after the photos of the trees:
Flames of the forest tree
Black Fig Tree
River Tamarind Tree
Thornless Honey Locust
In the last year, we have prepared the field by:
- Fencing the field to protect it from sheep, we have run irrigation pipes to the field
- We have used pigs to seal the pond that we dug in that field to harvest clay for building
- Dug 4 swales on contour across the field
- Planted cover crops
- Used the pigs to plough the field
- Planted cover crops in the freshly ploughed field
On the 13th of November, we have planted the first row of trees. This is a diverse row of trees, most which grow big to put shade onto the adjacent road that we often walk along. This is to try and make it more comfortable walking around in the summer.
If they all make it they will need to be thinned out for firewood, timber or coppiced to make a hedge. if they don’t all grow then they will be the right amount of trees.
Next steps in this new agroforestry system
- Plant out 5 rows of fruit trees along the swales
- Plant some nitrogen-fixing and nurse trees.
- Plant a windbreak with an understory hedge
- Plant trees around the pond
- Plant cover crops to be used to hay as ally crops. Thank you to our pig for tilling this soil so we can do this
- Plant grape vines along the swales between the trees
- Plant perennial vegetables and herbs next to each tree to make use of the drip lines
- Pant pumpkin seeds by each tree, this is so we can grow pumpkins but also the pumpkin leaves will tell us how wet or dry the soil is around the trees
- Finish installing the irrigation
If you want to learn about agroforestry then please do join us as an intern or take a look at our other agroforestry blogs.
Please help us please help by donating to our reforestation program.