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Evergreen Agriculture: The use of fertilizer trees in maize production in Malawi.

Summary

Agroforestry is a set of tools which farmers can use to increase yields, build soil fertility, raise their income, and boost their food security. ICRAF and its partners have worked closely with farmers for decades to promote and develop simultaneous intercropping practices to address the challenges in soil fertility facing smallholder farmers.

As supplementary technology in evergreen agriculture, agroforestry technology will focus on the concept of simultaneous intercropping of proven fertilizer trees in replenishing soil fertility and increasing crop yields. Simultaneous intercropping is an agroforestry technique whereby nitrogen-fixing woody trees are simultaneously grown with annual crops on the same piece of land at the same time. This is done in order to improve soil fertility and increase yields. While the trees are on the land throughout the year, the crops planted at the beginning of the rainy season dominate during the growing season.

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