Sunday 02 September 2012
Farmers planting trees
The tips of young walnut trees are just visible above the ready-to-harvest wheat.
There are rows of them and they should produce fine wood for cabinetmakers in 30 years or so.
Further away, oaks, ashes and cherry trees are growing in fields of sunflowers and broad beans, all signs of the return to agroforestry in La Bergerie de Villarceaux, an organic experimental farm in the Vexin region of north-west France.
Olivier Ranke and his team are pioneers. Ten years ago they started replanting hedges in a part of France where intensive farming is the norm and there is scarcely a shrub on the horizon.
In 2011 they took the next step by launching the most ambitious agroforestry project in northern France and planted more than 600 trees in 23 hectares of farmland.
Source: Argentine Beef Packers S.A.
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