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Not Arbor Day Yet BUT...


I do realize that Arbor Day remains far ahead of us but with fall’s vividly colorful leaves surrounding me in all directions, I cannot hesitate to mention the importance of agroforestry. Whether cultivated on a small parcel of land or a wide open field, trees planted and managed intentional, intensive, integrated and interactive serve Mother Earth and her inhabitants well. [1] Yet unbeknownst to many, the spectacular hues of autumn foliage extend beyond “leaf deep” beauty.


According to USDA Agroforestry Strategic Framework, carefully planned out areas of agroforestry “…provides opportunities to integrate productivity and profitability with environmental stewardship to support healthy, sustainable agricultural systems, economies and communities.” [2] Various benefits of cultivating agroforestry are protection for valuable topsoil, livestock, crops and wildlife, improved water quality, increased water-use efficiency by plants and animals, and reduced energy and chemical inputs. [3]


Specific to hardwoods, or deciduous trees, a large oak tree can transpire up to 40,000 gallons a year. [4] In addition, a large tree has the ability to absorb approximately 100 gallons of ground water. [5] This means that for people living in areas prone to droughts or flooding, agroforestry can make a significant alleviating difference.


So perhaps, also your love for the fall, and all it brings to nurture your soul at the first sight of those vividly colorful leaves is a just reason to not only plant a tree but trees -in plural form- and advocate for agroforestry to save the planet!


All the best, love & light~

Tammy


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[1] U.S. Department of Agriculture https://www.usda.gov/topics/forestry/agroforestry (last accessed 21 October 2020)

[3] Ibid.

[5] https://www.americanforests.org (last accessed 25 October 2020)



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