Adoption of agroforestry by small scale teak farmers in Ghana - the case of Nkoranza district

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:29

The taungya system was introduced to the West African sub-region with the aim of addressing land hunger for forest fringe communities. In Ghana, teak (Tectona grandis) was adopted as the main tree species for the taungya system. However, there is a perception that teak degrades the land and excludes undergrowth vegetation. The aims of this study were to identify the extent of the adoption of agroforestry by farmers. Despite the perception, and problems encountered by them. The study was carried out at Nkoranza, in the forest-savannah transitional zone of Ghana. All the teak farmers practiced some form of agroforestry. Majority of the farmers (74%) had only basic education. The natives of Nkoranza owned all the teak farms and ownership was mostly by the males. The spacing highly used was found to be 3.0 x 3.0 m, followed by 4.0 x 4.0 m and 2.0 x 2.0 m. with the percentages of farmers using the various spacing being 70, 26 and 4%, respectively. The trees were inter-planted with a mixture of food crops such as plantain. maize. yam. tomatoes, cassava and groundnuts. The reasons given for the intercropping were weed control. land suitability for crops, financial consideration, subsistence and soil fertility, with weed control being the most dominant reason. The problems enumerated by the farmers in a decreasing order were high maintenance cost. early canopy closure, dry weather, wildfires and insect pest. There was a report of decline in crop yield with stand development; and this can be attributed to early canopy closure, soil fertility decline and annual wildfires. However, the application of either inorganic fertilizer or organic manure. as well as the use of mounds ameliorated the decline in crop yield with stand development. To prolong cropping of the stands for food crops, wider spacing like 6.0 x 2.0 m and 4.0 x 4.0 m, and introduction of leguminous trees are recommended.

Responsible party
Forestry Research Institute of Ghana
Attachment Size
Agroforestry_farmers.pdf 707.34 KB