Do organisations provide quality seed to smallholders? – a study on tree planting in Uganda, by NGOs and CBOs

Published on January 1, 2007 | Author: Esben Brandi, Jens-Peter Barnekow Lillesø, Søren Moestrup, Henry Kisu Kisera

One of the main constraints to tree planting by small scale farmers is often claimed to be lack suitable planting material. The present study is one of a series of ISSAAC diagnostic studies in Kenya, Uganda, Malawi, and Burkina Faso to »establish a comprehensive understanding of opportunities and constraints for improving seed systems for agroforestry«.

This baseline study of the existing tree seed supply systems in Uganda is a part in this process. An inventory of all organisations involved in tree planting was done in two selected study areas (Lake Victoria Crescent and South Western region of Uganda).

In the inventory a total of 771 relevant organisations were identified within the two study areas. The bulk of these were small CBOs (77 %) and the number of organisations reduced drastically with size (only 8 were categorised as »big organisations«).

Based on that inventory, organisations along 5 different strata (according to their size and reach) were selected for further interviews in the South Western region of Uganda.

Based on the interviews with the selected organisations the following can be concluded:

(i) Matching species to sites is not an established procedure by any of the organisations included in this survey;

(ii) Species selection by CBOs and local NGOs is almost exclusively based on availability of seed and only to a limited degree on the knowledge of possible useful species that could be grown;

(iii) A few species are dominantly used;

(iv) Genetic quality of germplasm is generally not considered and when organisations procure seeds from others they do not evaluate genetic quality;

(v) Almost all NGOs and projects distribute germplasm to farmers for free (except for some that sell fruit tree seedlings at a subsidized price).

Brandi, E., Lillesø, J-P.B., Moestrup, S. & Kisera, H.K. (2007). Do organisations provide quality seed to smallholders? – A study on tree planting in Uganda, by NGOs and CBOs. Development and Environment; No. 8-2007. Hørsholm: Center for Skov, Landskab go Planlægning. Københavns Universitet.
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