Short Rotation Forestry (SRF) is a forest production practice for dendromass, here (i.e. BENWOOD) mostly for energy purposes, with the basic principle to grow fast-growing deciduous tree species on forest or agricultural land
- at a denser spacing and
- with elevated maintenance (e. g. weed control, irrigation)
compared to traditional forestry. The biomass is harvested when the trees have reached a size that is easily handled and economically sound, typically after c. 2 to 25 years. The size at harvest depends on plant material, growth conditions, culture technology and desired end-product, and is frequently between 10 and 20 cm diameter at breast height. SRF may be regarded as forestry or agricultural practice, depending on whether the plantations are grown on forest or agricultural land. To make a sharp distinction between forestry and short rotation forestry is often impossible.
Short Rotation Coppice (SRC) is an intensive SRF practice using fast-growing tree species with an ability to coppice from harvested stumps, i.e., new shoots can emerge from the rootstocks or stools. Harvests are performed in short intervals (2--6 years) depending on plant material, growth conditions and management practices. Planting, maintenance and harvesting is predominantly done by established agricultural practices allowing farmers to use methods and machines already known from annual crops. According to this definition, SRC falls within SRF and simply represents a more specialized practice of SRF. As SRC is regarded a specialized form of SRF, it will be considered in the assessments performed within BENWOOD.
Agroforestry is a collective name for land-use systems and practices where woody perennials are deliberately integrated with crops and/or animals on the same land management unit. The integration can be either in spatial mixture or temporal sequence. There are normally both ecological and economic interactions between the woody and non-woody components in agroforestry.(Definition taken from partner ICRAF published as well at the FAO website). Fast-growing trees grown in SRF can be part(s) of an agroforestry system.