Long term: The Lifetime of a Tree or Person

ISLAND PLANTS: Ancient traditions, modern adaptability. Keeping people healthy even in climate change.

Traditional plants of the Marshalls were brought by Island people many centuries ago. They are adapted to atoll conditions: sandy soils and occasional inundation, storms and droughts. They are better able to withstand extreme conditions due to El Niño or climate change than almost any recently introduced species. Traditional and local fruits, vegetables and staple crops provide more vitamins and fiber than imported white rice, white bread, sugar, soda, and fatty meats. They help prevent Vitamin A deficiency, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer. Local plants support rich traditions: ceremonies, traditional medicine, basketry, and art.

GARDENING: Plant resilient trees and crops that can tolerate drought and salty conditions

Ask extension agents and experienced farmers about traditional and modern ways of gardening.

Enjoy TRADITIONAL FOODS that keep you healthy with vitamins and fiber

Care for COASTAL FOREST that holds the shoreline and protects crops from salt spray.

Learn about the long-term effects of climate change in the Marshalls

What changes will affect agroforestry in the Marshalls and when? We still do not know what choices the world will make and exactly how the air and oceans will change in the long term. Let’s think about what the climate will be during the next forty years, because if we plant a coconut tree now, it will begin to bear fruit soon and will continue to be productive for at least forty years. Forty years allows time for coconuts, breadfruit and other trees to provide crops for children and grandchildren!

For more reading about the Marshall Islands and climate change, see Climate Change in the Marshall Islands and Climate Variability, Extremes and Change in the Western Tropical Pacific.