By the mid-1980s, almost all the natural vegetation in densely populated areas in central Niger had disappeared, and this part of the country was characterized by near-continuous agriculture. Since that time, the need to intensify agriculture has motivated large numbers of smallholder farmers to increase the number of on-farm trees. This happened not through the planting of seedlings, but through the protection and management of woody species that resprouted naturally on smallholders’ farmland. In this way, farmers contributed to a significant regeneration of new agroforestry parkland.
This article was submitted for inclusion in the forthcoming edition of ETFRN News 60 - Restoring African drylands, due for release in December 2020, containing 25 articles plus interviews and boxes describing farmer-led, NGO, private sector, government and international initiatives. These highlight the roles of varied policies and stakeholder interests, and identify opportunities to encourage smallholder and community participation in scaling out successes and meeting national, regional and global commitments.