This handbook of locally based agricultural practices brings together the best of science and farmer experimentation, vividly illustrating the enormous diversity of shifting cultivation systems as well as the power of human ingenuity. Environmentalists have tended to disparage shifting cultivation (sometimes called 'swidden cultivation' or 'slash-and-burn agriculture') as unsustainable due to its supposed role in deforestation and land degradation. However, a growing body of evidence indicates that such indigenous practices, as they have evolved over time, can be highly adaptive to land and ecology. In contrast, 'scientific' agricultural solutions imposed from outside can be far more damaging to the environment. Moreover, these external solutions often fail to recognize the extent to which an agricultural system supports a way of life along with a society's food needs. They do not recognize the degree to which the sustainability of a culture is intimately associated with the sustainability and continuity of its agricultural system. Unprecedented in ambition and scope, Voices from the Forest focuses on successful agricultural strategies of upland farmers. More than 100 scholars from 19 countries--including agricultural economists, ecologists, and anthropologists--collaborated in the analysis of different fallow management typologies, working in conjunction with hundreds of indigenous farmers of different cultures and a broad range of climates, crops, and soil conditions. By sharing this knowledge--and combining it with new scientific and technical advances--the authors hope to make indigenous practices and experience more widely accessible and better understood, not only by researchers and development practitioners, but by other communities of farmers around the world.

part I|36 pages


chapter 2|8 pages

Working with and for Plants

Indigenous Fallow Management in Perspective
ByHarold Brookfield

chapter 3|21 pages

Conceptualizing Indigenous Approaches to Fallow Management

A Road Map to this Volume
ByMalcolm Cairns

part II|105 pages

Retention or Promotion of Volunteer Species with Economic or Ecological Value

chapter 4|17 pages

Relict Emergents in Swidden Fallows of the Lawa in Northern Thailand

Ecology and Economic Potential
ByDietrich Schmidt-Vogt

chapter 6|8 pages

Kammu Fallow Management in Lao P.D.R., with Emphasis on Bamboo Use

ByDamrong Tayanin

chapter 11|9 pages

Managing Imperata Grasslands in Indonesia and Laos

ByLesley Potter, Justin Lee

chapter 12|15 pages

Natural Forest Regeneration from an Imperata Fallow

The Case of Pakhasukjai
ByJanet L. Durno, Tuenjai Deetes, Juthamas Rajchaprasit

chapter 13|5 pages

When Shifting Cultivators Migrate to the Cities, How Can the Forest Be Rehabilitated?

ByBorpit Maneeratana, Peter Hoare

part III|84 pages

Shrub-based Accelerated Fallows

chapter 14|11 pages

Fallow Improvement with Chromolaena odorata in Upland Rice Systems of Northern Laos

ByWalter Roder, S. Maniphone, B. Keoboualapha, K. Fahrney

chapter 16|5 pages

Piper aduncum Fallows in the Lowlands of Papua New Guinea

ByAlfred E. Hartemink

chapter 17|13 pages

Management of Tecoma stans Fallows in Semi-arid Nusa Tenggara Timur, Indonesia

ByTony Djogo, Muhamad Juhan, Aholiah Aoetpah, Ellen McCallie

chapter 18|11 pages

Improved Fallows Using a Spiny Legume, Mimosa invisa Martius ex Colla, in Western Leyte, the Philippines

ByEdwin A. Balbarino, David M. Bates, Zosimo M. de la Rosa

chapter 19|12 pages

Management of Mimosa diplotricha var. inermis as a Simultaneous Fallow in Northern Thailand

ByKlaus Prinz, Somchai Ongprasert

part IV|46 pages

Herbaceous Legume Fallows

chapter 20|11 pages

Growing Ya Zhou Hyacinth Beans in the Dry Season on Hainan Island, China

ByWeifu Lin, Jusheng Jiang, Weiguo Li, Guishui Xie, Yuekun Wang

chapter 21|11 pages

Indigenous Fallow Management Based on Flemingia vestita in Northeast India

ByP.S. Ramakrishnan

chapter 22|15 pages

Benefits of Phaseolus calcaratus in Upland Farming in Northern Vietnam

ByNguyen Tuan Hao, Ha Van Huy, Huynh Duc Nhan, Nguyen Thi Thanh Thuy

chapter 23|9 pages

Viny Legumes as Accelerated Seasonal Fallows

Intensifying Shifting Cultivation in Northern Thailand
BySomchai Ongprasert, Klaus Prinz

part V|142 pages

Dispersed Tree-based Fallows

chapter 29|15 pages

Alnus nepalensis–Based Agroforestry Systems in Yunnan, Southwest China

ByHuijun Guo, Yongmei Xia, Padoch Christine

chapter 30|38 pages

Shifting Forests in Northeast India

Management of Alnus nepalensis as an Improved Fallow in Nagaland
ByMalcolm Cairns, Supong Keitzar, T. Amenba Yaden

chapter 32|14 pages

Multipurpose Trees as an Improved Fallow

An Economic Assessment
ByPeter Grist, Ken Menz, Rohan Nelson

chapter 33|11 pages

Pruned-Tree Hedgerow Fallow Systems in Mindanao, the Philippines

ByPeter D. Suson, Dennis P. Garrity, Rodel D. Lasco

part VI|61 pages

Perennial-Annual Crop Rotations

chapter 34|11 pages

Teak Production by Shifting Cultivators in Northern Lao P.D.R.

ByP.K. Hansen, H. Sodarak, S. Savathvong

chapter 35|10 pages

Fallow Management in the Borderlands of Southwest China

The Case of Cunninghamia lanceolata
ByNicholas Menzies, Nicholas Tapp

chapter 37|15 pages

Cost-Benefit Analysis of a Gmelina Hedgerow Improved Fallow System in Northern Mindanao, the Philippines

ByDamasa B. Magcale-Macandog, Canesio D. Predo, Patrick M. Rocamora

chapter 39|4 pages

Bamboo as a Fallow Crop on Timor Island, Nusa Tenggara Timur, Indonesia

ByA. Bamualim, J. Triastono, E. Hosang, T. Basuki, S.P. Field

part VII|165 pages


chapter 40|15 pages

Indigenous Management of Paper Mulberry in Swidden Rice Fields and Fallows in Northern Lao P.D.R.

ByKeith Fahrney, Onechanh Boonnaphol, Bounthanh Keoboualapha, Soulasith Maniphone

chapter 42|13 pages

Does Tree Diversity Affect Soil Fertility?

Findings from Fallow Systems in West Kalimantan
ByDeborah Lawrence, Dwi Astiani, Marlina Syhazaman-Karwur, Isabella Fiorentino

chapter 44|7 pages

Indigenous Fallow Management on Yap Island

ByMarjorie V. Cushing Falanruw, Francis Ruegorong

chapter 45|36 pages

The Damar Agroforests of Krui, Indonesia

Justice for Forest Farmers
ByGeneviève Michon, Hubert de Foresta, Ahmad Kusworo, Patrice Levang

chapter 46|7 pages

Upland Fallow Management with Styrax tonkinensis for Benzoin Production in Northern Lao P.D.R.

ByManfred Fischer, Sianouvong Savathvong, Khongsak Pinyopusarerk

chapter 47|6 pages

The Lemo System of Lacquer Agroforestry in Yunnan, China

ByLong Chun-Lin

chapter 48|23 pages

From Shifting Cultivation to Sustainable Jungle Rubber

A History of Innovations in Indonesia
ByEric Penot

chapter 49|14 pages

Rubber Plantations as an Alternative to Shifting Cultivation in Yunnan, China

ByGuangxia Cao, Lianmin Zhang

chapter 50|6 pages

Ma Kwaen

A Jungle Spice Used in Swidden Intensification in Northern Thailand
ByPeter Hoare, Borpit Maneeratana, Wichai Songwadhana

chapter 51|7 pages

Alnus-Cardamom Agroforestry

Its Potential for Stabilizing Shifting Cultivation in the Eastern Himalayas
ByRita Sharma

chapter 52|5 pages

The Sagui Gru System

Karen Fallow Management Practices to Intensify Land Use in Western Thailand
ByPayong Srithong

part VIII|79 pages

Across Systems and Typologies

chapter 54|12 pages

Strategies of Asian Shifting Cultivators in the Intensification Process

ByDev Nathan, P.V. Ramesh, Phrang Roy

chapter 55|12 pages

Rebuilding Soil Properties during the Fallow

Indigenous Innovations in the Highlands of Vietnam
ByHoang Xuan Ty

chapter 57|6 pages

Indigenous Fallow Management Systems in Selected Areas of the Cordillera, the Philippines

ByFlorence M. Daguitan, Matthew Tauli

chapter 58|13 pages

Management Systems in Occidental Mindoro, the Philippines

ByMichael Robotham

chapter 59|8 pages

Changes and Innovations in the Management of Shifting Cultivation Land in Bhutan

ByT. Dukpa, P. Wangchuk, K. Rinchen, K. Wangdi, W. Roder

chapter 60|5 pages

Swidden Agriculture in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea

ByBire Bino

chapter 61|7 pages

The Problems of Shifting Cultivation in the Central Highlands of Vietnam

ByPhan Quoc Sung, Tran Trung Dung

part IX|61 pages


chapter 63|10 pages

Productive Management of Swidden Fallows

Market Forces and Institutional Factors in Isabela, the Philippines
ByPaulo N. Pasicolan

chapter 64|14 pages

The Feasibility of Rattan Cultivation within Shifting Cultivation Systems

The Role of Policy and Market Institutions
ByBrian M. Belcher

chapter 65|11 pages

The Role of Land Tenure in the Development of Cinnamon Agroforestry in Kerinci, Sumatra

ByS. Suyanto, Thomas Tomich, Keijiro Otsuka

chapter 66|7 pages

Effects of Land Allocation on Shifting Cultivators in Vietnam

ByDinh Van Quang

chapter 68|11 pages

Community-Based Natural Resource Management in Northern Thailand

ByThawatchai Rattanasorn, Oliver Puginier

part X|22 pages