Step 2. Set your goals
Before going out and spending money on seedlings or mature plants, it is important to first determine why it is that you want to plant trees. Asking yourself how they will contribute to your farming objectives is a great way of determining what trees you should plant and where.
The below lists provide some suggestions for how trees can contribute to your farming objectives and may help you determine why you might chose different goals. It is important to remember that you can have multiple goals on a single property.
Shade and shelter
- Shelter for livestock from sun or cold winds improve animal welfare and productivity, particularly lamb survival.
- Shelter for pasture to increase growth and hence animal productivity (liveweight gain, fertility, etc).
- Shelterbelts to reduce speeds and spread of grass fires.
- Increase farm capital value.
- Income from timber – sawlogs, veneer logs, pulpwood or firewood.
- Income from other products – tree seeds, mushrooms, native flowers, or honey.
- Sequester carbon to offset farm greenhouse gas emissions.
- Improve water quality for livestock, river health, amenity or catchment benefits.
- Control erosion and protect riparian zones and waterways.
- Reduce land or stream salinity.
- Improve farm biodiversity.
Beauty and security
- Improve the beauty and amenity of the farm and the attractiveness of the farm as a place of work
- Reduce biosecurity risks from neighbours and buffer against weed seed loads and spray drift.
- Increase privacy from neighbours or the public
- Linear tree plantings to delineate land classes.
Write down your goals for how planting trees will help you reach your farming objectives.