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Trees outside forests (TOF): a case study of the wood productionconsumption situation in Kerala

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This paper analyses the wood productionconsumption situation in Kerala state, India. Wood is defined to include all timber, industrial wood, fuelwood and charcoal. The analysis reveals a comfortable position, with a surplus of 0.027 million m3 of wood. Of the total wood production of 11.714 million m3, forests provide about 10 percent and trees outside forests contribute to the remaining 90 percent. The study shows the importance of trees outside forests, particularly in home gardens which are renowned for their mixed cropping multi-tier agro-forestry system. The ecologically rich home garden system that produces substantial quantities of wood is a traditional farming practice that evolved in Kerala. The home gardens with a variety of multi-purpose trees may be considered as a model for extension to other similarly endowed regions within and outside the country, not only for wood production but also for social and environmental benefits.
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Keywords: home gardens; multi-purpose trees; trees outside forests; wood consumption; wood production

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Scientists, Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi - 680 653, Kerala, India. 2: Inspector General of Forests, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India, New Delhi, India.

Publication date: June 1, 2008

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