Monday, August 4, 2008


Janes Siahaya, Mulawarman University, Indonesia

Agroforestry systems are well known throughout the world since ancient times. People lived in the forest at that time and cultivated their gardens just for subsistance.
A garden, when there are agricultural and forestry plants planted together, is called an “agroforestry garden”. In Indonesia, forestry plants are not systematically planted by farmers, but rather amateurish. They are used only as shelterbelts or boundaries but not commercially since farmers still can easily gather wood and other products from the forest, especially outside Java and Madura like in East Kalimantan. In forest or timber company areas, in contrast, the agricultural plants are planted not by the company butby the workers, like vegetables, seasonal fruit trees, grains and tuber crops (cassava, etc.), just as a hobby or to fulfill their needs and interests.
In Indonesia as a whole, and EastKalimantan in particular, a change of the land use system from pure agriculture to agroforestry systems in the farmer’s gardens will be connected with some dificulties. However, chances for success and development are good if the folowing factors are taken into account to meet the conditions of the regional development plans:
1. The availability of land (minimum two hectares per farmer),
2. The intensive extension in the field of agro-forestry,
3. An intensive forest annd forestry control,
4. Market access for forest products,
5. A personal interest of the farmers, and
6. Easy availability of credits from rural banks for farmers.
The mentioned factors are essential for solving problems involving food, energy, environment and social-economic functions for an increasing number of population while the area of the land is constant. Prediction of this number for the future is, of course, also needed to enable us to distribute the land to the farmers accordingly. Other factors will become major after the land is utilized.
Several terms agroforestry that is significantly gardening in an area of the forest in part:
1. Agricultural cntractor system (Jamaica).
2. Baumfeldwirtschaft, Brandwirtschaft or Waldeldbau (Germany).
3. Bosakherbouw (Dutch).
4. Chena (Sri Lanka).
5. Consorciacao (Brazilian).
6. Cultures sylvicole et agricole combinée, culture intercalaires, la méthode sylvo-agricole, le système sylvobananier or plantation sur culture (French)
7. Dhya, Jhooming, kumri, punam, taila or tuckle (India).
8. Kaingining (Filipino)
9. Ladang (Malay)
10. Licensed cultivator system (Tanzanian).
11. Parcelere (Puerto Rico).
12. Shamba (Kenya)
13. Tahmil (Libyan)
14. Taungya (Burma), other region used this name (hill cultivation).
15. Tumpang Sari (Indonesian)