The post Agroforestry: A Remarkable Australian Conservation Story appeared first on Allkind Joinery & Glass Pty Ltd written by .

All Australians are concerned about preserving what’s left of our beautiful natural landscape. The establishment of a system of State and National Parks is an example of conservation on the government level. The commercial establishment of tree plantations helps make formerly clear-cut areas of bushland sustainably productive. These are both examples of large scale conservation, but the unsung heroes of the conservation movement in Australia may be small scale farmers engaging in agroforestry.

Tree Cover - Yan Yan Gurt ExperimentWhat is Agroforestry?

An amalgam of 2 words, “agriculture” and “forestry”, agroforestry is the blending of reforestation and agriculture. In the past, agriculture was based on clearing land in order to maximise crops yields. The problem with this strategy was that in the long term, growers were killing the soil they depended on to grow their crops. Agroforestry is a relatively new, but promising way to rectify that error. By voluntarily growing trees on their land, Australian growers are discovering that not only is agroforestry good for the land, it is good for profits as well.

The Yan Yan Gurt Experiment

The Great Ocean Road in Victoria is one of the world’s most scenic touring highways. Running from Melbourne to the South Australian border, it seems like every bend in the road brings drivers face-to-face with yet another breathtaking vista. One of the most popular stopover destinations on the Great Ocean Road is the town of Lorne. Inland from Lorne are some of Australia’s most fertile farmlands.

An agroforestry experiment has been quietly taking place around the Yan Yan Gurt Catchment, about 30 kilometres inland from Lorne for decades. Between 1990 and 2002, a group of more than 30 family farmers planted trees on their properties, bringing tree cover in the 2000 hectare catchment up from a low of 6% to a healthier 21%. Supported by both government and private industry, the Yan Yan Gurt experiment has proven to have had a wide range of benefits, both commercially and environmentally. Not only have the tree plantings not had a negative effect on crop yields, water quality has improved in the area and even a small scale timber industry has emerged as some farmers sustainably cut down older trees and replace them with new growth.

Why Agroforestry Matters

Victoria is far away from Queensland, but climate change affects us all. According to agroforestry.net.au, average temperatures in the 3 major farming areas of Australia have increased in line with global warming trends. At the same time, extreme weather conditions caused by global warming have had a significant negative effect on productivity and crop yields. Planting trees on farms in the Yan Yan Gurt Catchment and elsewhere in Australia and throughout the world has had a direct positive effect in those areas as well as helping in a small way towards mitigating the devastating effects of carbon emissions.

As a prestige joinery that depends on sustainable and responsible use of timber and as concerned citizens, Allkind Joinery Brisbane welcomes agriforestry projects such as those launched in Victoria and elsewhere. If we all do our bit, we can continue to enjoy our beautiful country and pass it on for future generations to enjoy.

Please call us toll free on 1800 757 949 with any questions you may have on timber joinery products, our friendly staff are always happy to help with any advice you need.

The post Agroforestry: A Remarkable Australian Conservation Story appeared first on Allkind Joinery & Glass Pty Ltd written by .

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