Agro-horti-forestry

Agro-horti-forestry is the core component of a Wadi programme. It is implemented in family-owned plots of under-utilised lands. One Wadi plot of around one acre (around 0.405 hectares or 4050 square metres) is developed for each family, with its full participation.

Wadi plots can also be divided according to a certain number of trees planted by each participating family. 

Agro-horti-forestry involves:

  • selection, plantation and care of one or more species of fruit trees in Wadi plots
  • plantation of a large number of multi-purpose tree species (MPTS) along the boundaries of plots
  • cultivation of foodgrains, vegetables or flowers in spaces between fruit trees, at least till the fruit trees reach maturity

Wadi turns underutilised lands into productive assetsWadi turns underutilised lands into productive assetsConsidering average space needs of fruit trees for healthy growth, around 60 fruit trees can be planted a Wadi plot of one acre, and over 500 multi-purpose tree species can be planted on its boundaries. View a schematic of a model plot layout.

While the fruit trees are expected to provide assured income, year after year, after they reach maturity, MPTS are expected to partially meet the domestic fuel, fodder and wood needs of families. View a listing of MPTS for different agro-climatic regions.

Foodgrains are cultivated in spaces between fruit treesFoodgrains are cultivated in spaces between fruit treesFruits are also consumed by families, enhancing their nutrition status. Read a case study on how fruit production is used.

Some income can be generated from MPTS;  for example, eucalyptus and bamboo can be cut every few years for sale of wood.

Crops are grown to meet the food and additional income needs of families till fruit trees reach maturity. Typically tribal families cultivate rice and/or coarse cereals and some vegetables or pulses during the monsoons. Post-monsoon, cultivation of crops like wheat and maize, and winter and summer vegetables, is possible if water is available after meeting the needs of fruit trees.

Improved agriculture practices lead to higher productionImproved agriculture practices lead to higher productionIn regions close to wholesale flower markets, cultivation of hardy flower-plants like jasmine can be highly remunerative. Read a related case study from Jawahar in Thane district of Maharashtra. 

Production of crops is enhanced under Wadi through promotion of improved agriculture practices; the emphasis is on promotion of companion cropping. Depending on the layout of the plot, crop cultivation may be possible even after fruit trees have grown fully.

See also:
Selection of fruit trees
Plantation and care of trees
Practical challenges in agro-horti-forestry

FAQ
How is agro-horti-forestry different from agro-forestry or tree-based farming?

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