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International Journal of Plant & Soil Science

International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, ISSN: 2320-7035,Vol.: 14, Issue.: 3

Original Research Article

The Potentials of Agroforestry Systems in East Africa: A Case of the Eastern Arc Mountains of Tanzania


Msafiri Y. Mkonda1,2* and Xinhua He1,3*

1Centre of Excellence for Soil Biology, College of Resources and Environment, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China.

2Department of Physical Sciences, Faculty of Science, Sokoine University of Agriculture, Morogoro 3038, Tanzania.

3School of Plant Biology, University of Western Australia, Crawley 6009, Australia.




The optimization of crop yields and environmental services need a proper selection and adoption of sustainable farming systems. Agroforestry is a farming system which involves the integration of trees and crops in the same plot. It is a climate-smart environmental conservation system that aims at increasing crop yields as well as environmental services. The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM) of Tanzania, which cover Usambara and Uluguru Mountains, have a significant potential for agroforestry. They are characterized by potential biophysical resources such as fluvial, vertisol and xerosols soils with the annual rainfall exceeding 1200mm per year. We reviewed over 40 peer reviewed publications to assess the ecological significance of the agroforestry system in the EAM with clear focus on Usambara and Uluguru Mountains and found that the agroforestry system has been in practice on a small scale for a couple of years. The agroforestry has significantly increased crop yields by 50% in few areas where it is practised and has protected the environment by improving soil fertility, enabling the carbon sequestration and protecting water resources. As a result, this study recommends further researches on the same to reveal its potential in improving the conditions of small-scale farmers in East and Sub-Saharan Africa.


Keywords :

Agroforestry; climate change; Tanzania; East Africa.


Full Article - PDF    Page 1-11    Article Metrics


DOI : 10.9734/IJPSS/2017/31299

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