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Management strategies for Acacia plantation diseases in Indonesia and Vietnam

Project Code: FST/2014/068
Program: Forestry
Research Program Manager: Dr Nora Devoe
Project Leader: Prof Caroline Mohammed, University of Tasmania
JUL 2015
JAN 2020
Project Status: Legally Committed/Active
Key partners
Center for Forest Biotechnology and Tree Improvement, Forestry Research and Development Agency
Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute
Gadjah Mada University
Institute of Forest Tree Improvement and Biotechnology
NSW Department of Primary Industries
University of Sunshine Coast
Vietnam Academy of Forest Sciences
Vietnamese Academy of Forest Sciences


This project aims to reduce productivity impacts of diseases on acacia plantations and build capacity and collaboration on forest health in Indonesia, Vietnam and neighbouring countries. 

Indonesia’s forest industries are dominated by the pulp and paper sector. To make these industries more sustainable and less reliant on sourcing pulpwood from native forests, Indonesia’s Ministry of Forestry has promoted policies that encourage the development of a plantation-based wood supply. Three species, Acacia mangium, A. crassicarpa and Eucalyptus pellita and hybrids currently account for most plantings because of their superior performance. Two significant diseases have been causing significant losses of planted trees in Indonesia. 

About half of Vietnam’s plantation estate is managed or co-owned by smallholder farmers. The fungal disease Ceratocystis has recently caused up to 20 per cent mortality of some acacia plantations in the country. 

Effective disease and pest management, with a balance between research, extension and capacity building, is important to sustain plantation forest productivity.

Project outcomes

  • Widespread understanding of health constraints (beyond study areas) to forest production at regional level (SE Asia), and adoption of practices (appropriate management, good biosecurity) to overcome constraints.
  • Empowering public and private sectors in Indonesia, Vietnam and neighbouring SE Asian countries to carry out collaborative and proactive research to protect forest resources.
  • Reducing impacts due to major forest health issues and the perception that such problems will only get worse and not better is no longer a factor.
  • Benefiting communities and downstream processing industries from the increased availability of high-quality wood resources, and reduced pressure on native forests.