Promoting Sustainable Livelihoods in Guatemala

 
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Jul 23, 2012

Growing the roots of agroforestry

A local farmer shows her agroforestry plot.
A local farmer shows her agroforestry plot.

In Guatemala, EcoLogic has recently established four plots of land that will be used to grow and cultivate Inga edulis seeds, and increase farmers’ access to the plant, which is used in agroforestry. Agroforestry is a method of agriculture that integrates trees and shrubs with crops like corn, beans, and coffee. By taking advantage of the natural benefits of trees, small-scale farmers can use agroforestry to produce more using less land, easing their burden while improving their lands.

Though tropical forests are often destroyed for agriculture, EcoLogic is helping small farmers to reap the rewards forests offer by reintroducing trees onto their lands. By integrating Inga trees into agriculture, farmers can reduce erosion, provide a source of organic fertilizer, maintain a healthy climate for crops, and increase yield thus reducing the need to clear more forests for agricultural lands.

Local farmers’ use of Inga for agroforestry is one way in which EcoLogic is working with communities to promote alternatives to the ecological destruction of slash and burn cultivation, while also increasing crop yields.

We believe that in order to save forests and water sources, we must work with communities to provide the tools and training they need to sustainably manage their natural resources. Inga is one of the tools we use and an integral part of that solution.

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Project Leader

Gina Rindfleisch

Cambridge, MA United States

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