Agroforestry is the practice of combining the management of annual crops and/or animals with trees. Agroforestry systems, largely composed of perennial crops, offer the resilience needed to address extreme climatic issues such as drought and torrential rain, along with social and economic factors that influence agricultural production of small-scale farmers. Trees used for agroforestry provide food, forage, industrial raw materials, lumber, fuel, and mulch, while diversifying diets and income. An ECHO Technical Note entitled "Agroforestry Principles" contains more information on the use of multi-purpose trees.


  1. African Mahogany Khaya nyasica

    African Mahogany, Red Mahogany, Nyasaland Mahogany, Manyama

    Khaya nyasica is a large evergreen or semi-deciduous forest tree up to 60 m in height. It has a rounded crown that provides dense shade. This tree is an important timber species and the wood is also used for furniture, firewood, tools, carving and for canoes.
  2. Prairie Acacia Acacia angustissima

    Prairie Acacia, Acacia

    Acacia angustissima grows as a thornless shrub or small tree to an average of 2-7 meters tall with a single short trunk. It is a legume, capable of fixing nitrogen in nodules on its roots if the appropriate strain of Rhizobium bacteria is present in the soil. It is often found in tropical...
  3. Woman's Tongue Tree Albizia lebbeck

    Woman's Tongue Tree, East Indian Walnut, Siris Tree, Kokko

    Albizia lebbeck is a fast-growing, drought resistant, nitrogen-fixing tree used for reforestation, shade, fodder and fuel-wood. The trees can reach 30 m in height. The wood is known to be termite resistant and is suitable for building furniture.
  4. Flemingia Flemingia macrophylla

    Flemingia

    Flemingia macrophylla is a perennial, deep-rooted, woody, nitrogen-fixing shrub up to 2.5 m in height. It is useful for shade, and for soil conservation and improvement as an alley crop, green manure, or cover crop.
  5. Kenya Shade Tree Acrocarpus fraxinifolius

    Pink Cedar, Shingle Tree, Indian Ash, Mundani, Lazcar, Kenya Shade Tree

    Acrocarpus fraxinifolius is a fast-growing, deciduous tree, which can grow to heights of 30-60 m and a diameter of over 200 cm. The timber resembles ash and walnut and is used in construction and furniture. It is also used for fodder, erosion control, reforestation, and as a shade tree. A....
  6. Pod Mahogany Afzelia quanzensis

    Arbre Makola, Mahogany Bean

    Afzelia quanzensis is a tall tree, up to 35m, used for timber and agroforestry. This tree is grown primarily for its durable, reddish-brown wood used for furniture, floors, doors, stairs and windows, as well as for firewood. The wood is durable and fairly resistant to termites. The tree fixes...
  7. Silk Tree Albizia lucida

    Silk Tree

    Albizia lucida is a nitrogen-fixing reforestation tree that grows quickly and tolerates poor soil and waterlogging. Timber from this tree is used for furniture, construction, and pulp. It can also be used as high protein fodder and a shade tree.
  8. Black Locust/False Acacia Robinia pseudoacacia

    Black Locust, False Acacia

    Black Locust is a fast-growing, deciduous, nitrogen-fixing tree, growing up to 25 m in height. It is suited for temperate areas and high altitudes in the tropics. It is useful as a windbreak, erosion control, and shade. Black Locust provides excellent forage for livestock and bees. The hard wood...
  9. Sesbania sesban Sesbania sesban

    Sesbania Sesban

    Sesbania is a fast-growing, nitrogen-fixing perennial, growing to 7 m in height. It is typically found in wet locations and can withstand water logging and flooded conditions. Sesbania is used as a cover crop or green manure, coppices readily, provides light fuelwood, and good forage for...
  10. Tamarind Tamarindus indica

    Tamarind

    Tamarind is an attractive, evergreen, nitrogen fixing tree, growing to 30 m in height, and best adapted to semi-arid conditions. The sweet-tart pulp from the pod is eaten fresh, used as an ingredient in cooking, or made into a refreshing drink. Tamarind wood is used for lumber, firewood, and high...
  11. Neem Azadirachta indica

    Neem

    Neem trees are medium to large sized, drought resistant, multipurpose trees, that can be up to 30 m tall. All parts of the plant produce azadirachtin, a powerful antibiotic and antimicrobial. Seeds and leaves often have the highest concentrations and may be used to make insecticides and...
  12. Gumbo Limbo Bursera simaruba

    Gumbo Limbo, Gomie', Turpentine Tree, Tourist Tree, Gumtree, Gum Elm, West Indian Birch

    Gumbo Limbo is a very hardy, fast growing tree native to the West Indies and Central America. At maturity it reaches 30 m (100 ft). It is tolerant to long periods of drought and is easily propagated.
  13. Tara Caesalpinia spinosa

    Tara, Spiny Holdback, Guarango, Poinciana Spinosa

    Tara was first grown in the southwest portion of the island of Madagascar. It is now found on the continents of Asia, Africa, North and South America. It is a leguminous, spiny, slow-growing shrub which can grow into a tree that can produce seed pods for up to 65 years.
  14. Tree Lucerne Chamaecytisus prolifer

    Tree lucerne, Tagasaste

    Tree lucerne is a fast-growing, nitrogen fixing, shrub or small tree. It produces high yields of palatable, nutritious fodder as well as shade for livestock. It can also be used for fuelwood and bee forage.
  15. Fish Bean Tephrosia vogelii

    Fish Bean

    Fish bean is a short-lived perennial, somewhat woody, nitrogen-fixing plant, growing up to 3 m in height. This plant is used for green manure, erosion control, and mulch. It is known to contain rotenoids and can be used as an insecticide and fish poison. Fish bean should NOT be used as fodder for...
  16. Gliricidia Gliricidia sepium

    Gliricidia, Quick Stick, Rat Killer

    Gliricidia is a fast-growing, nitrogen-fixing tree up to 15 m in height. It is used for living fences, green manure, fodder, honey production, wind breaks, and fuelwood. This tree tolerates dry, acid, alkaline, and salty soils and was traditionally grown to shade cocoa trees.
  17. Red Gum Eucalyptus Eucalyptus camaldulensis

    Red Gum Eucalyptus, Red Gum, Morey Red Gum

    Red Gum is a very large, spreading tree that can grow to 40 meters. The tree is tolerant to many harsh conditions including drought, salt, heat, alkaline soil, and water-logging. Red Gum Eucalyptus is the most widely planted eucalyptus and is grown on plantations in many countries. It is used for...
  18. Apple Ring Acacia Faidherbia albida

    Apple Ring Acacia, Winterthorn, White Thorn, Anatree, Gao, White Acacia

    Apple ring acacias are tall, drought tolerant, deciduous, nitrogen-fixing trees up to 30 m in height. They are commonly used for inter-cropping with staple crops in dry areas as leaves help mulch and shade crops below. Faidherbia albida is an ideal multipurpose agroforestry tree that is widely...
  19. Silk Oak Grevillea robusta

    Silk Oak, Silver Oak, Meresi, Mgrivea, Grevillea

    Silk Oak is medium-sized to large tree up to 40 m tall, with dense branches projecting upwards. It is an excellent timber tree and has been used for shade in coffee plantations.
  20. Jatropha Jatropha curcas

    Jatropha, Barbados Nut, Physic Nut, Purging Nut

    Jatropha is a small, drought-tolerant, perennial tree growing up to 6 m in height. Oil from the seeds is used for candles, soap, and fuel which can be used as a substitute for diesel oil.
  21. Moringa Moringa oleifera

    Moringa, Drumstick tree, Ben Tree, Benzolive, Horseradish Tree, Malunggay, Ben Oléifère, Ben Ailé, Drumstick Tree

    Moringa is a very popular tropical fast growing tree up to 15 m in height. The young pods can be eaten and the leaves are an excellent source of calcium, vitamins, minerals and protein. The tree has a loose crown and can also be used for a hedge, living fence or windbreak. It coppices well to...
  22. African Moringa Tree Moringa stenopetala

    African Moringa Tree, Cabbage Tree, Malung Gay, Shefferew, Moringa éthiopien, Malung Gay, Murunga Kai, Sohnja

    African Moringa is a fast growing tree up to 15 m in height. It grows at higher and drier locations than M. oleifera. In comparison to M. oleifera, M. stenopetala has larger leaves with a milder taste when eaten raw, provides more shade, has a stockier and more bushy growth habit, can be more...
  23. Silver Terminalia, Silver Clusterleaf

    Silver terminalia is a small tree or shrub, valued for its strong wood, and growing to 23 m in height. This tree provides good fuelwood and is valuable for land reclamation and erosion control.
  24. Monkey Bread Piliostigma thonningii

    Monkey Bread, Camel's Foot Leaf Tree

    The Monkey Bread tree is a fairly short, nitrogen-fixing tree, to 15 m in height. It is one of the main species used for Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration in West Africa and is a good for fuelwood, household utensils, farm implements and light construction. It is known as a “famine food”...
  25. Cassia Senna spectabilis

    Cassia, Yellow Shower, Pisabed, Calceolaria Shower

    Cassia is a fast-growing, deciduous, nitrogen-fixing tree, growing to 10 m in height that has showy yellow flowers. It is useful for shade, as a landscape plant, for fuelwood, green manure, bee forage and light construction.
  26. Cassod Tree Senna siamea

    Cassod Tree, Blackwood, Iron Wood, Yellow Cassia, Thailand Shower, Siamese Cassia

    Senna siamea is a fast-growing, medium sized, evergreen tree, growing up to 18 m in height. Although it is in the legume family it does not fix nitrogen. Senna is a very useful landscape and timber tree that also provides shade and fodder for ruminants.
  27. Prickly Sesban Sesbania bispinosa

    Prickly Sesban, Danchi

    Prickly sesban is a fast-growing, annual, nitrogen-fixing shrub, growing up to 2 m in one season. It is valuable for soil improvement, erosion control, firewood, forage, fiber, and as a green manure/cover crop.
  28. Agati Sesbania grandiflora

    Agati, Corkwood Tree, Scarlet Wisteria Tree

    Sesbania grandiflora is a small, fast-growing, nitrogen-fixing tree, that can grow to 10 m height in 3-4 years. This plant is grown mainly as a green manure or cover crop but can also be used as forage for livestock.
  29. Toon Tree Toona ciliata

    Toon Tree, Australian Red Cedar, Burma Cedar, Indian Mahogany, Lud, Toona Tree

    The first recorded Toon Trees were found in Zimbabwe in 1903 and now can be found in other African countries and Australia. The Toon Tree is a large deciduous tree, reaching 20 m - 30 m (70 ft-100 ft) high and 1.8 m - 3 m (6 ft-10 ft) in girth with a large spreading crown and shallow roots. The...
  30. Buffalo Thorn Ziziphus abyssinica

    Buffalo Thorn, Jujube, Catch Thorn, Kankhande

    Buffalo thorn is a thorny, bushy shrub or small tree of semi-arid climates, growing to 12 m in height. It is used for its edible fruit and livestock browsing. The tree is good bee forage, and makes good firewood, charcoal, fence posts and furniture. Because of its thorns and tangled branches, the...
  31. Leucaena Leucaena diversifolia, L. leucocephala, L. pallida X L. leucocephala

    Leucaena, Lead Tree, Wild Tamarind, Jumbie Bean

    The genus Leucaena includes several multipurpose tree species and interspecific hybrids that can withstand almost any type or frequency of pruning or coppicing. They are native to Mexico and Central America, and now abundant in the Philippines, West Africa, Nepal, Australia and Hawaii. Spanish...
  32. Edible Australian Acacias Acacia colei, A. elecantha, A. torulosa, A. tumida

    Acacia, Edible Australian

    Most Edible Acacia seed species are from northern semi-arid regions of Australia and range from medium-sized trees to large, multi-stemmed bushes. Several Edible Acacia species have been successfully introduced into African semi-arid regions like Niger and Senegal. Acacia colei is a drought...
  33. Acacia mangium Acacia mangium

    Acacia mangium, Acacia, Cachou, Mimosa

    Acacia mangium can grow to be a tall tree up to 30 m. It is a fast-growing tree that can tolerate acidic and degraded soils. This tree grows best with moderate rainfall and full sunlight. It is one of the major leguminous species used in plantation forestry programs throughout Asia and the...
  34. Northern Black Wattle Acacia auriculiformis

    Northern Black Wattle, Kasia, Ear Leaf Acacia, Auri, Akasya

    Acacia auriculiformis is a low to medium-sized 8-20 m tall, fast-growing tree with yellow flowers. It is adaptable to harsh soils (pH 3-9) and used primarily as a nitrogen-fixing tree for fuelwood, charcoal, crop shade, and wind breaks.
  35. Calliandra Calliandra calothyrsus

    Calliandra

    Calliandra is a vigorous, nitrogen-fixing, bushy tree that can be fast-growing on poor soils. The tree responds well to coppicing, is a good fuelwood source and the leaves provide excellent fodder. Calliandra is used to enrich soil and provide stability on steep slopes.
  36. Coral Tree Erythrina poeppigiana

    Coral Tree, Mountain Immortelle, Pito, Immortelle, Poró

    Coral Tree is a large, nitrogen-fixing tree up to 35 m in height and used for living fences, shade, mulch, ruminant forage, and alley cropping. The leaves provide very good leaf litter for soil improvement and the tree has been used for shade in cacao plantations.
  37. Sesbania Sesbania rostrata

    Sesbania

    Sesbania rostrata is an annual—or short-lived perennial—legume used as a green manure cover crop and fodder species for livestock. Growing to heights of 3 m, S. rostrata is one of the few legumes that produces nodulated stem tissues for further colonization by nitrogen-fixing bacteria. Leaves of...
  38. Monkey Thorn Senegalia galpinii

    Monkey Thorn

    Monkey Thorn is very tall, deciduous, nitrogen-fixing tree, growing to 30 m in height. It is adapted to hot dry climates and has bottle-brush cream flowers. This tree is primarily used as a fast-growing timber species for shade and animal fodder.
  39. Mesquite Prosopis chilensis

    Mesquite, Algarroba, Chilean Mesquite

    Mesquite is a small, drought resistant, nitrogen-fixing tree, growing to 15 m. It is a good species for restoring degraded soils and establishing trees in overgrazed semiarid areas. The wood is hard, makes very good charcoal and is used for tools and furniture.
  40. Guazuma Guazuma ulmifolia

    West Indian elm, Bay Cedar

    Guazuma is a small to medium-sized tree that grows up to 30 m tall. Its leaves form a compact, rounded canopy, remaining green throughout the year except in areas with a long dry season. It is used as a source of fuelwood, shade, and fodder for livestock.
  41. Baobab Adansonia digitata

    Baobob, African Baobab, Cream Of Tartar Tree, Monkey Bread Tree, Upside Down Tree

    Baobab trees are large, robust trees that originate from Africa and are found in arid to semi-arid areas. The trees typically grow up to 20-30 meters (m) tall with a diameter of 2-10 m. The tree is used for food, fodder, shelter, and shade. Baobab trees typically grow as solitary individuals and...
  42. Fever Tree Acacia xanthophloea

    Fever tree, African Thorn Acacia, Sulphur Bark, Mukonge, Arbre à Fièvre

    Acacia xanthophloea is a tall, fast-growing tree up to 25 m. This tree has greenish-yellow bark; the branches have white, straight spines that are 6 cm long.The main uses are for for timber, polewood, firewood, erosion control, and as a landscape tree. The name fever tree comes from the mistaken...
  43. Sandalwood Adenanthera pavonina

    Adenanthera pavonina is a medium to large tree ranging from 6-15m in height. These trees are known as a secondary forest tree for reforestation work, windbreaks, inter-planted with coffee, and shade. The wood is used for furniture, firewood, construction, and to make a red dye. Seeds are used as...
  44. Leucaena diversifolia Leucaena diversifolia

    Leucaena diversifolia is a nitrogen-fixing tree used for livestock fodder, windbreaks, hedges, living fences, fuel wood, paper pulp, and to minimize soil erosion. It can grow to 20 m in height with an open crown.
  45. Leucaena leucocephala Leucaena leucophala

    Leucaena leucophala is a fast-growing, nitrogen-fixing, multipurpose tree, growing up to 18 m in height. It is used extensively in agroforestry systems for fodder, fuelwood, soil conservation and soil improvement. This tree is moderately drought tolerant and coppices well. It has become a problem...
  46. Leucaena hybrid KX2, Hawaii Leucaena pallida x Leucaena leucocephala

    KX2, Hawaii is an artificial hybrid of Leucaena pallida and Leucaena leucocephala. This, and other hybrids with L. leucocephala, were crossed to provide resistance to a psyllid that seriously affected L. leucophala. KX2 is used mainly as a forage but also provides fuelwood and shade.
  47. Markhamia lutea Markhamia lutea

    Nile Tulip

    Markhamia lutea is an upright, evergreen tree, growing to 15 m in height. It is valued for timber, shade, bee forage, fuelwood and landscaping use.