Agroforestry management concepts which combine the production of veneer quality timber with agricultural plant production or grazing are researched within the cooperative agroforst project. These management systems have high economic and social value due to their multi-functionality on a world wide scale, while they are of less importance in Germany nowadays. These areas are closer related in appearance and ecological value to agricultural fields or in respective to forests depending on the portion and coverage of the tree components and their developmental stage.
The question of future land utilization methods arise due to the changing structure of agriculture and the increased demand for plant resources of all kind. Agroforestry management systems can have interesting opportunities on an economic and landscape ecology level under certain conditions. The objective of the agroforst cooperative is to research if and when agroforestry system are an valid option to traditional methods.
Areas with a high percentage of forest in the low mountain ranges, where agroforestry systems can be an option to an increase of forest from planting or succession are researched as well as areas with a high portion of intensive agriculture where agroforestry can enhance the ecological and aesthetic value of the landscape.
Goals of the project are to develop and assess such combined management concepts which are adapted to the site, and the management objectives as well as to assess the nature conservation aspect of agroforestry systems and expert interviews about landscape aesthetics.