The Kenya Forest Service (KFS) assistant head of Mau Conservancy, Alfred Abong’o, told Xinhua on Tuesday that although the practice of planting trees in farms is encouraged in Kenya, many farmers fail as a result of using unsuitable species.

“There is a challenge of farmers planting species which do not fit the area ecological conditions and end up with no tree,” he said in Nakuru.

Abong’o said fertility of the soil and the levels of rainfall were key in determining the type of tree to plant in order to obtain a flourishing woodlot.

He emphasized the need for farmers to conduct proper research before embarking on planting activities to avoid further degradation of natural resources.

“Farmers should avoid buying seedlings from uncertified outlets. They should get them from Kenya Forestry Research Institute where they can also be advised on proper practices for achieving better results,” Abong’o said.

Commercial tree farming promotes conservation of gazetted forests as it reduces pressure exerted on the available wood products, according to the KFS.

It is part of community programs the KFS encourages in an effort to minimize excessive harvesting of trees in the state forests to meet high demands for charcoal, firewood and timber.

“Commercial tree farming not only contributes to environmental conservation but also creates self-sufficiency in the households which prevents people from destroying the forests,” Abong’o said.

He said to achieve a 10 percent tree cover across the country was anchored on the success of farmers in embracing appropriate practices in selecting seeds and seedlings and managing the trees. Enditem

Source: Xinhua


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