Farm Finances 

Trees are a long-term investment

It takes a long-term commitment of money, time and infrastructure development for farmers and landowners to see the full benefits that agroforestry systems offer. Long-term land access can be especially difficult for beginning farmers. The Savanna Institute works with farmers and communities on short- and long-term needs, including the best ways to generate income or secure potential sources of funding to offset the upfront investment it takes to get started. We work up and down the value chain on underwriting, possible buyers for crops, and other critical needs to make agroforestry accessible and viable for farm-scale operations. PHOTO: Canopy

The Partnering for Agroforestry video series features nine stories of people creating innovative partnerships to launch their farms and scale up their agroforestry practices. This collection of stories from the field was completed with support from USDA National Agroforestry Center (NAC).

Impact Investment Plans

What will it take to catalyze agroforestry in the Midwest?

The Savanna Institute has talked with experts across the value chain about the top ten bottlenecks for the Midwest Hazelnut and Eastern Chestnut industries. Our Impact Investment Plans help Midwest farmers and businesses understand how they can access opportunities available in these promising perennial crop markets.

Download the free reports to learn more.

Overcoming Bottlenecks in the Eastern US Chestnut Industry

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Overcoming Bottlenecks in the Midwest Hazelnut Industry

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Designing an Effective Long-Term Agroforestry Lease: An Interactive Guide

Are you looking for farmland? An agricultural lease may be an option for you. If you are thinking about planting tree crops, you will need long-term access to land to reap the full benefits of your investment. This 56-page Interactive Guide walks you through core questions to help you plan a long-term agroforestry lease with a landowner. You will learn:

  • Reflection questions to help you define your farm vision.
  • Strategies for legal resilience to help you plan a long-term lease with a landowner.
  • Tools for clear communication necessary in establishing any successful partnership.
  • Sample language and glossary terms you could incorporate into your lease.

Co-published by the Savanna Institute and Farm Commons in February 2024.

Download the free guide to learn more.

Land Access Resources

Secure, long-term land access is important for agroforestry given the many years or decades it can take perennial plants to mature. Land leases are one option farmers in the Midwest are successfully using to gain access to land. However, conventional land leases are based on annual crops, so special considerations are needed to lease land over the multi-year or even multi-decade scales necessary for agroforestry. We have partnered with Farm Commons to create a series of resources on long-term lease arrangements.

Explore options for long-term land access.

Generating Value Through a Long-Term Agroforestry Lease: Tipsheet for Landowners

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Long-term Agricultural Lease for Agroforestry Workbook

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Online Agroforestry Courses

Take an online agroforestry course to build your skillset. Courses $40/each.

Land Access and Finances in Agroforestry

Planning prior to starting an agroforestry practice or system is essential for long-term sustainability. In the Agroforestry Foundations course, we started thinking about all the aspects that need to be considered to help us plan our agroforestry project, and in this course, we take a much deeper dive into planning for agroforestry, land access options and resources, and finance options and resources.

Marketing in Agroforestry

If selling at least one product or generating income is a goal of your agroforestry practice, then, it’s important to consider how you will market the product(s) you want to sell. Agricultural marketing includes all the activities producers do in order to promote and sell products to consumers.  In this module, we will review the basic elements of marketing and how to create a marketing plan for an agroforestry enterprise.

Do you have a question about adding trees to your land?

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Cost-sharing for agroforestry


Agroforestry practices are often covered by NRCS CRP and, in some states, EQIP is also an option. To learn more about what resources are available in your area, email one of our agroforesters.


Sponsor an Apprentice!

Your gift could provide experience and technical education for aspiring farmers through on-farm training with a mentor farmer and community building opportunities for farmers, apprentices, and those interested in incorporating trees on farmland.