Do you have agroforestry on your farm?

We’d love you to take part in Agroforestry Open Weekend 2023 – we have over 30 sites taking part in 2023. It’s a great way to put the word out about agroforestry and showcase what you are doing in a gently co-ordinated way alongside other Agroforestry Farms.

Here are some FAQs – do let us know if you’d like more information.

What is Agroforestry Open Weekend?

Agroforestry Open Weekend is nothing more than an identified weekend in the year when farms and other sites with agroforestry planting can be open in co-ordination with each other to welcome visitors.

In that sense, it is based on projects like “Open Gardens” and “Open Studios” (in the UK) which perform a similar function.

When is it?

In 2023, Agroforestry Open Weekend is Friday 19 – Sunday 21 May 2023.

Do we have to open all weekend?

Not at all. You can open for as much or as little as you want. In previous years, some farms opened just on the Friday, Saturday or Sunday, or even for just part of a day; others opened for longer. It is entirely up to you.

Who can take part?

Any site anywhere in the world which has agroforestry planting and is willing to welcome visitors that weekend can take part.

In 2021 there were 6 farms involved, all in East Anglia. In 2022, it was 10, across England and in Ireland. In 2023 we would like to have more farms from across the UK and beyond if we can.

How has it gone in previous years?

All the feedback has been positive, both from participating farms and visitors.

The farms found it a good opportunity to welcome visitors and showcase their agroforestry.

For some, this was their only such public opening in the year and they found it good to fit in with a wider publicised scheme as well as perhaps publicising it within their area as a useful farm open day.

Others who open regularly to visitors enjoyed being part of a particular wider focus on agroforestry with many visitors going to multiple sites over the weekend.

It’s a great opportunity to showcase your farm and agroforestry generally to the public.

Do we have to offer tours?

Not at all. In previous years, some sites organised tours starting at particular times in the weekend; others allowed visitors to wander around, learning about what they were seeing from a leaflet or notice boards.

Do we have to offer refreshments

No it is entirely up to you. Some sites chose to do so. Most did not. It’s obviously helpful to make that clear in the publicity so people know what to expect.

Can we restrict numbers?

Yes, of course. In previous years some sites asked people to email in and book a place, perhaps at a particular time; or they set up booking/registration service. But you could just allow people to turn up if that suits you.

What about money?

No-one is making money out of this. There is no sponsorship, paid advertising or charges to be part of this event. And we would hope that participating farms would not charge visitors either (unless that is what they already do).

What sort of people turn up?

Last year the people who visited seemed very appreciative – they were a wide range of people including farmers thinking of agroforestry, gardeners, campaigners, politicians, foodies, bakers, and a wide range of others who just wanted to look and learn. A lot of the visitors went to multiple farms. Each farm seemed to attract a mix of visitors from its local area and some from further afield. Obviously, having more farms open in the weekend makes it easier for people to go to different places, which is great.

What about publicity?

This web site is the main focus for information/publicity about Agroforestry Open Weekend.

We are planning an upgrade to this web site in early 2023 to make it more attractive and easy to use.

We are also planning to set up other social media accounts to publicise the event on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc.

We will send information about the event to networks and contact groups so that they can pass it on more generally.

We obviously hope that participating farms will use any social media or news opportunities they have to promote not just their own involvement but also the event in general. Even just alerting people to www.agroforestryopenweekend.org so they can find out more themselves is very helpful.

What do we have to do to take part?

If you would like to talk about taking part please email us on info@agroforestryopenweekend.org. Your email will be seen by David Wolfe (from Wakelyns, UK) and Rosemary Venn (Coventry University) who are administering the weekend’s arrangements. One of us will reply.

If you do take part, we will set up a web page on this website dedicated to information about your farm and information and links from the web site front page (including putting you on the map).

We can then either provide you with a username and password which allows you to login and edit the dedicated page (which is straightforward, at least for basic stuff); or you can send us stuff and we can do it for you.

You (or we) can add as much information as you want, including text, photos, videos, and links. We suggest as a minimum:

  • Name of farm
  • A description of your farm overall
  • A description of your agroforestry – when planted, what area, what trees, what purposes, what you do in between the trees, and so on.
  • Address including postal code etc
  • When you are open over the weekend
  • Whether people need to book/register and if so how
  • Whether you are providing refreshments
  • Any special parking/access information
  • Whether people can bring dogs (a common question)
  • How accessible your site is for people with mobility difficulties (including wheelchair users) in terms of parking and getting round
  • Contact email/phone for more information
  • Details of your website or similar (if you have one) where there is more information

You can make any registration/booking requirements as informal or formal as you wish – there are no central or set rules. You could just provide a contact email.

There is an example of a farm page from last year here. But it need not be nearly as complex and detailed as this. Or it can be much more so.

Is this being run by any some organisation?

No. The initiative for this event has come entirely from agroforestry farmers ourselves. Although we allow some NGOs to put public information on this website, they have no control or influence as a result of that. Similarly, we are grateful for the help which various organisations have given through publicising the event, that is all they do. This is an entirely public spirited celebration of agroforestry.

Any more questions or to get in touch?

Please email info@agroforestryopenweekend.org