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Defining Silvopastures: Integrating Tree Production With Forage-Livestock Systems for Economic, Environmental, and Aesthetic Outcomes



Authors as Published

John Fike, Extension Forage Specialist and Associate Professor, Crop and Soil Environmental Sciences, Virginia Tech; Adam Downing, Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent, Virginia Cooperative Extension; John Munsell, Forest Management Extension Specialist and Associate Professor, Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation, Virginia Tech

This publication is available in an enhanced digital version and PDF.

To many Virginia landowners, silvopasture is a somewhat novel term composed of common elements: “silvo,” a derivation of the Latin “silva,” refers to woods or forest; “pasture” refers to the plants that make up grazing lands — the basis for most ruminant livestock production. While these words are readily recognized individually, there is some confusion about the combined term — “silvopasture.” The aim of this publication is to reduce confusion by clearly defining silvopasture, explaining why and how trees might be managed together with forages and livestock, and describing some of the hurdles and opportunities that come with managing these agroforestry systems.

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Publication Date

May 6, 2021