Defra - Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Science Search

Science and Research Projects

Return to Science Search homepage   Return to Project List

Evaluate potential of silvopastoral land-use systems involving production of high quality timber(94/95 is NF0201) - WD0301

This project relates to the promotion of a competitive economy through providing the basis for the development of an alternative use of land and increasing the production of timber in farms. Silvipastoral agroforestry offers the opportunity for farm incomes to be maintained through grass production and sheep or cattle grazing in the early stages of tree growth and presents a possibility for increasing the scope of the Farm Woodland Scheme. It may prove particularly applicable to Less Favoured Areas and marginal lands providing a development for existing extensive grazing schemes with avoidance of cash flow problems for farmers and attendant socio-economic implications, whilst in the longer term diverting land from agricultural production. There are potential environmental benefits with possible increase in the diversity of fauna and flora compared with conventional grassland and forestry systems and the use of contrasting tree species and planting patterns may enhance the landscape. Information on the feasibility of agroforestry in Britain and on growth of grass and trees through the production cycle is extremely limited. Biological and economic modelling studies carried out in 1985 by IGER, MLURI and Forestry Commission indicated considerable potential and encouraged the establishment of co-ordinated experimentation through the aegis of the UK Agroforestry Research Discussion Forum. This project provides principally for the continuation of experiments at Bronydd Mawr and North Wyke that were set up in 1987/8 to obtain input/output data for silvipastoral agroforestry systems through a production cycle and to enhance understanding of the interactions involved in order to provide the basis for validation and improvement of the earlier models, for the wider appraisal of the role of silvipastoral agroforestry in Britain and for advice on practical aspects of agroforestry. Other sites of this National Network Experiment are located at Glensaugh (MLURI), Anglesey (UCNW), Loughgall and Broughshane (DANI).
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 1990

To: 1994

Cost: £373,000
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Institute of Grassland and Environment Research (IGER)
Fields of Study
Farm Woodlands