Farmers’ Motivations to Plant and Manage On-Farm Trees in Ghana

K.A. Oduro*, B.J.M. Arts, B. Kyereh, G.M.J. Mohren

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Deforestation and forest degradation, especially in the agricultural landscapes, are serious threats to biodiversity conservation and sustainability of the timber industry. Planting trees on farms has been identified as having great potential to increase forest resources from agricultural landscapes. This paper examined farmers’ motivations and behaviour to engage in on-farm tree planting and management in Ghana by combining internal and external factors in a socio-psychological model. Data were collected from 156 smallholder farmers from five communities in two forest districts using a semi-structured questionnaire. Additional farm inventory data were collected from 33 farmers under two on-farm tree planting schemes. On-farm tree planting was perceived as providing income, access to personal timber for furniture, and access to loan facilities. Incentives such as provision of grants, farming inputs, capacity training, and access to markets for agricultural produce are factors that motivate on-farm tree planting in Ghana. The average standing volume of on-farm trees in the study area is 51.9 m3/ha which is almost twice the national average for the off-reserve areas in the semi-deciduous forests to which much of the study sites belong. Many farmers considered high financial costs and limited knowledge of appropriate techniques in managing planted on-farm trees as barriers to the development of tree stock on farms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393–410
JournalSmall-scale Forestry
Issue number3
Early online date29 Jan 2018
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2018


  • Agroforestry
  • Decision-making
  • Farmer motivation
  • Socio-psychological model


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