Optimization of Agroforestry System Establishment Practises in Bas-Saint-Laurent in a Context of Recurrent Water Stress




CRSNG (subventions d’engagement partenarial)

Development partners

Le Groupe SYGIF

Project Manager/Contact at Biopterre

The Saint-Valerien-de-Rimouski forest garden was established in June 2019 by Biopterre and Groupe SYGIF, on a 325 m2 vacant plot located behind the community centre, in the heart of the village. After elaborate site preparation, 367 plant species, comprising over 30 edible species, were planted. An experimental design was integrated into the plantation to compare five types of mulch, in the aim of optimizing establishment practices in situations of recurrent water stress. Several follow-up and sampling visits were conducted during the 2019 and 2020 growing seasons to assess soil moisture levels, as well as the growth rate, strength and productivity of planted species. At the same time, verbal accounts were gathered to assess the attractiveness of the site to community members. A large majority of the plants showed excellent growth. This suggests that when using a thick layer of mulch in such site conditions, irrigation is not essential (apart from that provided during the establishment period), even in the context of drought. As a result of this forest garden project, developments seem more promising than ever in the Rimouski-Neigette RCM. Concrete options are proposed to clients in order to optimize the development of future sites, to facilitate their maintenance, and to increase community ownership, all in the optics of sustainability.


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