Private Planting Programme


The free distribution of seedlings was first advocated by the Jamaica Agricultural Society in 1924 in response to the increasingly obvious negative impacts of deforestation. No immediate action was taken on this recommendation until 1929 when a Forest Officer was appointed to the Lands Department, the government agency responsible at that time for the supervision and administration of Crown Lands, which included all forested lands. For the next 8 years this officer did invaluable work in the distribution of timber trees to private land owners.

When the Forest Branch of the Lands Department was established in 1937, timber seedling distribution continued although at a reduced scale because of the reforestation efforts of the Forest Branch itself. Nevertheless 19,000 seedlings were distributed during 1937. With the passing of the Forest Act in December 1937, the Branch was transferred to the Department of Science and Agriculture. It became an independent Forestry Department in 1942, and throughout this period and into the 1950s, the Department continued its policy of providing tree seedlings for private reforestation.

In the late 1950s an initiative called the "State Assistance for Private Afforestation" was launched which provided landowners registered in the programme with seedlings, technical advice and a small cash grant. The cash payment was made in installments based on the proper establishment of the trees following an inspection by, and the recommendation of, a forest officer. The programme was discontinued in the 1980s due to budgetary constraints.

Click here for Application Form and Brochure to download

The Application Process

The key elements of the Private Planting Programme are as follows:

What is offered?

Free seedlings and technical (ie, silvicultural) advice are offered to attract prospective applicants/participants. Technical advice is given on topics such as:

After trees are established, growers may benefit from tax concessions and with certification from the Conservator, growers may be eligible for duty concessions on the acquisition of farm vehicles/equipment.

Who are targeted?

The range of individuals/entities include:

To date, smallholder farmers have been the main beneficiaries of the Private Planting Programme. However, the Forestry Department is now attempting to recruit into the Private Planting Programme landowners whose main income at present is not derived from their land . Such persons are more likely to be financially able to make the longer-term investment which forestry requires.


Title Adobe Reader Version
Private Planting Programme - Application Form Application_Form
Private Planting Programme - Brochure PPP_Brochure

How does it work?

For more information, please contact:

Public Relations and Corporate Communication Branch
Forestry Department
173 Constant spring Road
Kingston 8
Tel: (876) 924 - 2667/8