The term agroforestry is derived from agriculture and forestry. It is the combination of agriculture and forestry through the integration of trees on farmland. It increased social economic and environmental benefits.
There are three main classifications of agroforestry systems: Agrisilviculture includes trees with crops, Silvopastoral includes trees with animals, Agrilvopastoral system gathers trees, crops, and animals
Removing trees is a common practice together in conventional agriculture. It badly affects hills, valleys leading to severe erosion of soil on farmlands and cause climate change. Agroforestry is a source of protection for the natural forest and also provides significant economic benefits to farmers.
Benefits of Agroforestry:
Agroforestry can have a variety of positive effects on both crops and animals. The roots of trees extend much deeper in soil than those of annual crops, by this pasture water can more easily infiltrate into the ground that leads to reduced waterlogging and water runoff, trees also take up nutrients in deeper layers that cannot be reached by the crops and therefore prevent the leakage of fertilizers or manure into the groundwater.
The canopies of the trees serve as windbreaks which lower the evaporation of the surrounding vegetation. It acts as a shelter and increases animal welfare due to the inclusion of trees in agriculture. Agroforestry enhances biodiversity and helps with biological pest control by attracting birds that feed on caterpillars which means trees can diversify a farmer’s. Trees are also an income source because they can provide fodder for livestock food such as fruit and nuts firewood. Trees used as a source of fuel, food, and non-wood products
Agroforestry comes with long-term benefits such as preserving forests, cleaner water beds healthy biodiversity. It is a sustainable and profitable relationship between the farmer and its environment.
Best trees for agroforestry in Pakistan:
Always choose fast-growing and heightened trees. Kikar, Tali, shirell, Babool (acacia) trees are a good choice for agroforestry, Some fruit-growing trees such as mango, java palm, berry tree, etc. Medicinal trees such as Amaltas (Cassia fistula ), polybractea (essential oil), Moringa, Arjan tree, neem and bakain (chinaberry)tree, etc.