Relationship between farm size and reforestation activity: evidence from Queensland studies

Authors: Harrison, Steve; Herbohn, John

Source: Small-scale Forestry, Volume 4, Number 4, December 2005 , pp. 471-484(14)

Publisher: Springer

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This paper reviews the findings of nine studies carried out over about the last decade by a forestry socio-economic research group in Queensland, Australia. On the basis of survey evidence and landholder typology research, the questions of who plants trees and for what reasons are addressed, and inferences are drawn about the impact of land fragmentation on farm forestry. It is concluded that forestry is less popular on the larger and commercially viable farms than on smaller holdings of similar land type, and plantation establishment is often supported by off-farm income, so that farm fragmentation may actually lead to increased tree planting. However, whether this would lead to increased timber production is less clear, because of the strong interest of people on small holdings in environmental plantings and because of difficulties in marketing small quantities of the variable quality timber from mixed-species plantings. Also, the quality of silviculture appears to be positively correlated with area planted. Some implications are drawn for land-use policy.
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