15 Fast Growing Trees in Kenya - Agrolearner.com
Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

15 Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

Kenya is blessed with a diverse range of tree species, with some of them growing rapidly to maturity in a short period.

Fast-growing trees are ideal for providing shade, improving soil quality, preventing soil erosion, and producing timber and fruits within a relatively short period.

The use of fast-growing trees has gained popularity among Kenyan farmers due to their ability to provide numerous environmental and economic benefits.

If you’re looking to plant trees in Kenya, this guide will help you make an informed decision on the best species to grow.

15 Fastest Growing Trees in Kenya

Growing trees can be challenging and beneficial but more challenging is to select the specie of tree you want to plant especially when you are considering the grow fast trees.

We have compiled below the 15 best fast growing trees om Lenya that you can grow in your garden or any location of your choice.

#1.     Acacia (Wattles/Acacias)

Acacias, also known as Wattles, are fast-growing trees that are popular in Kenya due to their numerous benefits.

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These trees can grow up to 20 meters in height with a spread of 10 meters, and they typically reach maturity within 4-6 years.

Acacias have a wide range of uses, including for timber, fuelwood, charcoal, medicine, and as fodder for livestock.

They are also important in soil conservation and have nitrogen-fixing properties. The bark and gum of the tree are used in various medicinal applications. In addition, the tree is also an important source of food for wildlife.

#2.     Melia Volkensii (Mukau)

Melia Volkensii, commonly known as Mukau, is a fast-growing deciduous tree that is native to Kenya. It can reach a height of up to 25 meters and has a straight, cylindrical trunk with a diameter of up to 60 cm.

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Mukau grows at a rate of about 1-1.5 meters per year and can reach full maturity in 15-20 years.

The wood of Mukau is highly valued for its durability and termite resistance, and is commonly used for construction, furniture, and carvings. The tree also provides shade and serves as a windbreak.

#3.     Eucalyptus Grandis (Rose Gum)

Eucalyptus Grandis, also known as Rose Gum, is a fast-growing tree species in Kenya. It can grow up to 50 meters tall and has a straight trunk with rough, greyish-brown bark.

The leaves are green and lance-shaped, with a distinctive aromatic scent. The growth rate of Eucalyptus Grandis is rapid, and it can reach full maturity in 5-6 years.

This tree species is commonly used for timber production, poles, and charcoal production. It also has medicinal properties and can be used to treat various ailments.

Its oil extract can be used for cleaning, as well as in the fragrance and flavoring industry.

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#4.     Markhamia Lutea (Yellowwood)

Markhamia Lutea, commonly known as Yellowwood, is a fast-growing tree that can reach up to 30 meters in height. It has a straight trunk, grayish bark, and a dense, rounded crown with bright green leaves.

Yellowwood has a moderate growth rate and can reach maturity in about 8-10 years. The tree is valued for its timber, which is used for furniture, construction, and carving.

Additionally, the bark and leaves of the tree have medicinal properties and are used to treat various ailments such as fever, coughs, and headaches. The tree is also a source of nectar for honeybees.

#5.     African Cypress (Widdringtonia)

African Cypress, also known as Widdringtonia, is a slow-growing but long-lived evergreen tree that is native to Kenya.

It is known for its attractive foliage and unique, symmetrical shape. The tree can grow up to 20 meters tall and has a narrow trunk that can reach up to one meter in diameter.

It is drought-tolerant and can grow in a wide range of soils, including those with low fertility.

African Cypress is commonly used for furniture, carpentry, and construction due to its durable and termite-resistant wood. It takes around 25-30 years to reach full maturity.

#6.     Pine

Pine trees are evergreen and have needle-like leaves arranged in clusters of two to five. They grow rapidly, with a growth rate of 1 to 2 meters per year.

Pine trees are used for timber and paper production, as well as for ornamental purposes. Depending on the species, they can take between 10 to 30 years to reach full maturity.

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#7.     Casuarina Equisetifolia (Whistling Pine)

Casuarina Equisetifolia, commonly known as Whistling Pine, is a fast-growing evergreen tree that can grow up to 20 meters tall.

Its leaves are slender and cylindrical, resembling pine needles. The tree is highly adaptable and can grow in different soil types, including sandy and salty soils.

It is commonly used for windbreaks, erosion control, and as a source of timber for construction, furniture, and fuelwood.

The tree can reach full maturity within 5 to 7 years, making it a popular choice for commercial planting.

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#8.     Bamboo

Bamboo is a tall, woody grass that belongs to the family Poaceae. It is known for its fast growth rate and can grow up to 30 meters tall in just a few years.

Bamboo is popular for its versatility and is used for various purposes such as construction, furniture making, and paper production.

It takes around 3-5 years for bamboo to reach full maturity, depending on the species. Bamboo also has environmental benefits as it can help to prevent soil erosion and absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

#9.     Cupressus Lusitanica (Mexican Cypress)

Cupressus Lusitanica, also known as Mexican Cypress or Cedar, is a fast-growing evergreen tree native to Mexico and Central America.

It can grow up to 30 meters tall and has a conical shape. This tree is known for its strong wood, which is resistant to rot and pests.

It has a growth rate of 1-2 meters per year and reaches maturity in 10-20 years.

Cupressus Lusitanica is used for timber, firewood, and as an ornamental tree in landscaping. It is also used for reforestation and soil erosion control.

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#10.   Moringa Oleifera

Moringa Oleifera is a fast-growing tree in Kenya that can reach a height of up to 10 meters. Its leaves are used for medicinal purposes due to their high nutritional value.

The tree also produces edible seed pods, which are rich in protein and minerals. Moringa Oleifera grows rapidly, with a growth rate of up to 3 meters per year. It can reach maturity in just 2-3 years.

The tree is also drought-resistant and can thrive in a variety of soil types. It is commonly used for reforestation, as well as for medicinal and nutritional purposes.

#11.   Cedrela Odorata (Spanish Cedar)

Cedrela Odorata, also known as Spanish Cedar, is a fast-growing tree native to the tropical regions of South America.

It can grow up to 30-40 meters in height and has a straight trunk with a diameter of 60-90 cm. Its bark is grayish-brown, and its leaves are pinnately compound with up to 11 leaflets.

The tree produces fragrant flowers, which are followed by cylindrical fruit capsules containing winged seeds.

Cedrela Odorata has a fast growth rate, reaching maturity in 10-15 years. It is used for timber, furniture, and musical instruments.

Its wood is highly valued for its durability, resistance to insects, and pleasant scent. In traditional medicine, its anti-inflammatory attributes are also utilized.

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#12.   Jacaranda Mimosifolia (Jacaranda)

Jacaranda Mimosifolia, commonly known as Jacaranda, is a fast-growing deciduous tree that can reach up to 20 meters tall. It has a wide-spreading canopy with beautiful lavender-blue trumpet-shaped flowers that bloom in clusters.

The tree prefers well-drained soil and can grow in full sun to partial shade. Jacaranda is a popular ornamental tree in Kenya, used in landscaping and as a shade tree.

It can also be used for timber, fuelwood, and as a source of nectar for bees. Jacaranda has a relatively fast growth rate and can reach maturity in 10-15 years.

#13.   Schizolobium Parahybum (Guapuruvu)

Schizolobium parahybum, commonly known as Guapuruvu or Brazilian Firetree, is a fast-growing tree that can reach up to 30 meters in height.

It has a straight trunk with a diameter of up to 60cm and a wide, spreading crown. The leaves are pinnate, with up to 11 leaflets, and the tree produces fragrant, yellow flowers.

This species has a growth rate of up to 3 meters per year and can mature within 10-15 years.

Guapuruvu is used in agroforestry systems, as a source of wood for construction and furniture, and for its nitrogen-fixing properties. It is also used in traditional medicine for its anti-inflammatory properties.

#14.   Terminalia Mantaly (Madagascar Almond)

Terminalia mantaly, also known as Madagascar almond or Voanioala, is a fast-growing tree native to Madagascar, but also found in Kenya.

It can grow up to 15-20 meters tall with a diameter of up to 60 centimeters. The tree has a straight trunk with smooth gray bark and a dense, spreading crown.

It produces fragrant white flowers and green fruits that turn brown when mature. The tree can reach full maturity in about 10 years.

The Madagascar almond tree has many uses, including as a timber tree, a source of fuelwood, and for agroforestry.

Its wood is hard and durable, making it suitable for construction and furniture. The leaves, bark, and fruits of the tree also have medicinal properties and are used in traditional medicine.

Also, the tree is known for its ability to fix nitrogen in the soil, making it an important species for soil conservation and improvement.

#15.   Prunus Africana (African Cherry)

Prunus Africana, commonly known as the African Cherry, is a fast-growing, evergreen tree that can reach a height of 30 meters or more.

The tree has a narrow, conical crown and its bark is smooth and greyish-brown. It grows at a moderate to fast rate, with a growth rate of 1 to 2 meters per year.

The African Cherry is native to the mountainous regions of Central and East Africa and has many uses including medicinal purposes, timber, and as a food source for animals. It takes approximately 10-15 years to reach full maturity.

Benefits of Fast-Growing Trees in Kenya

  1. Economic Benefits: Fast-growing trees can provide a source of income through their various uses such as timber, fuelwood, and paper production.
  2. Environmental Benefits: Fast-growing trees help in soil conservation, erosion control, and climate change mitigation through carbon sequestration.
  3. Aesthetic Benefits: They enhance the beauty of the landscape, providing shade and improving air quality.
  4. Health Benefits: Some fast-growing trees, such as Moringa Oleifera, have medicinal properties and can be used in traditional medicine to treat various ailments.
  5. Wildlife Benefits: Fast-growing trees provide habitats and food for wildlife, contributing to biodiversity conservation.

Challenges of Planting Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

  1. Pests and diseases: Fast-growing trees are susceptible to pests and diseases, which can hinder their growth and development.
  2. High maintenance costs: Planting and maintaining fast-growing trees requires significant resources, including water, fertilizer, and labor.
  3. Limited market: The market for fast-growing trees is limited, and finding buyers for the products can be a challenge.
  4. Unsuitable planting sites: Not all areas are suitable for planting fast-growing trees, and planting them in unsuitable areas can lead to poor growth and low yields.
  5. Lack of knowledge and expertise: Lack of knowledge and expertise in planting and managing fast-growing trees can lead to poor yields and low-quality products.

Factors to consider when Planting Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

  1. Soil type and quality: The type and quality of soil are important factors to consider when planting fast-growing trees in Kenya. Ensure that the soil is fertile and has good drainage to support tree growth.
  2. Climate: The climate of the planting location is crucial for the growth and survival of the trees. Different tree species have varying temperature, rainfall, and sunlight requirements. Therefore, select species that can thrive in your area’s climate.
  3. Land availability and size: The size and availability of land determine the number of trees that can be planted. Ensure that the selected area has enough space for the desired number of trees to grow to maturity.
  4. Purpose: The purpose of planting the fast-growing trees should be considered. The species selected should align with the intended use, whether it is for timber, firewood, or environmental conservation.
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Importance of Planting Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

  1. Environmental conservation: Fast-growing trees play a significant role in environmental conservation by reducing carbon emissions, preventing soil erosion, and providing a habitat for wildlife.
  2. Timber production: Kenya has a growing demand for timber, and fast-growing trees offer a sustainable source of timber for the construction industry.
  3. Fuelwood production: Fast-growing trees are a sustainable source of fuelwood, which is used for cooking and heating in rural areas.
  4. Economic benefits: Planting fast-growing trees offers a source of income for farmers through the sale of timber, poles, and other products.

Best Practices of Planting Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

  1. Site selection: Choose a site with enough space, adequate sunlight, and good soil drainage.
  2. Seedling selection: Choose healthy seedlings that are disease-resistant, preferably from a reputable source.
  3. Planting: Plant the seedlings in the correct spacing and depth, and ensure they are well watered and mulched.
  4. Pruning: Prune the trees regularly to promote healthy growth and remove dead or diseased branches.
  5. Pest and disease management: Monitor the trees for any signs of pests or diseases and take appropriate action.
  6. Harvesting: Harvest the trees at the right time to maximize their value.

Is Fertilizer Important for Fast Growing Tree?

Yes, fertilizer is important for fast-growing trees as they require nutrients to support their rapid growth. Fertilizer can help increase the yield and quality of the trees while also improving their resistance to pests and diseases.

However, it is important to apply the right amount and type of fertilizer to avoid damaging the trees.

Is fast Growing Trees Profitable?

Fast-growing trees can be profitable, especially if they are planted for commercial purposes such as timber production, landscaping, or agroforestry.

However, the profitability will depend on several factors, including the market demand for the tree species, the cost of production, and the selling price.

Additionally, it may take several years before the trees reach maturity and can be harvested for profit.

Fast-Growing Shade Trees In Kenya

Shade trees are essential in creating a cool environment, reducing heat, and providing shade.

They also contribute to air pollution reduction by absorbing pollutants and releasing oxygen. Fast-growing shade trees include the Jacaranda, Melia volkensii, and Grevillea robusta.

These trees have broad canopies and can grow up to 6 meters in just two years.

Trees That Grow In Dry Areas In Kenya

In arid and semi-arid regions, trees play a crucial role in combating desertification, erosion, and climate change.

Some of the fast-growing trees that can thrive in dry areas in Kenya include the Acacia tortilis, Prosopis juliflora, and Balanites aegyptiaca.

These trees have deep roots that can access groundwater, and they provide shade, fodder, and wood for fuel.

Most Profitable Trees To Grow In Kenya

The demand for wood products in Kenya is high, and growing trees for commercial purposes can be a profitable venture.

Some of the most profitable trees to grow in Kenya include Eucalyptus, Grevillea robusta, Cypress, and Pines.

These trees can mature in 3-10 years, and their wood is used for construction, furniture, and paper production.

List Of Indigenous Trees In Kenya

Kenya is home to over 7,000 plant species, with about 2000 being trees. Some of the indigenous trees in Kenya include the Fig, Baobab, Croton, and Olive.

These trees have cultural, medicinal, and ecological significance, and their conservation is vital in maintaining biodiversity.

Best Ornamental Trees In Kenya

Ornamental trees add beauty and aesthetic value to landscapes and gardens. Some of the best ornamental trees in Kenya include the Flamboyant, Jacaranda, African Tulip, and Bougainvillea.

These trees have vibrant colors and attractive flowers that bloom seasonally, enhancing the ambiance of the environment.

Fast Growing Timber Trees

Fast-growing timber trees are essential in the timber industry, where the demand for wood products is high. Some of the fast-growing timber trees in Kenya include the Cypress, Eucalyptus, Pine, and Teak. These trees can mature in 5-15 years and have strong, durable wood that is suitable for construction and furniture production.

Conclusion

Fast-growing trees are a great addition to any landscape in Kenya. They not only enhance the beauty of your property but also provide ecological benefits such as soil conservation, shade, and habitat for wildlife. With the right planting techniques and care, these trees can grow rapidly and thrive in Kenya’s climate. Planting fast-growing trees is an investment in the future that you and generations to come can enjoy.

Author: David

David is a Kenyan farmer from the rural village of Nairobi. Growing up, he was surrounded by the beauty of the Kenyan countryside, which sparked his passion for farming. After completing his education, he decided to pursue a career in agriculture and has since dedicated his life to providing food for his local community. David is an experienced farmer and is experienced in a range of agricultural practices, including crop rotation, animal husbandry and soil management. He is passionate about promoting sustainable agriculture and is actively working to reduce food insecurity in his community.

4 Replies to “15 Fast Growing Trees in Kenya

    1. Thanks for your message, I have listed some of the trees you can start planting and it will grow very fast in a short time.

      Now, additional information you needed is to know which area are you planning to grow these trees, and in what way can we help you further from away from the information I have provided you here.

        1. Cecilia thanks for checking here.
          Now to answer your question In Luo Nyanza, which is a region in Kenya known for its distinct climate, you can consider planting fast-growing tree species like:

          1. Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus spp.): These trees are known for their rapid growth and can thrive in various soil types. They are often used for timber and firewood.

          2. Grevillea (Grevillea robusta): This tree grows quickly and provides valuable timber. It’s also good for soil improvement due to its nitrogen-fixing abilities.

          3. Cassia siamea (Cassia siamea): Also known as Siamese Senna, this tree grows fast and is well-suited to the region’s climate.

          4. Neem (Azadirachta indica): Neem trees grow relatively quickly and are known for their medicinal and insect-repelling properties.

          5. Moringa (Moringa oleifera): Moringa trees grow rapidly and have highly nutritious leaves, which are edible and rich in vitamins.

          6. Calliandra (Calliandra calothyrsus): Calliandra is a fast-growing nitrogen-fixing tree used for soil improvement and livestock fodder.

          When planting during a short rainy season, it’s important to ensure proper soil preparation, watering, and care to promote successful growth.

          Be sure to select tree species that are suitable for the specific conditions in your area, and consider seeking advice from local agricultural experts or forestry organizations for the best results.

          So, if there is anyway I can help you further, let me know via the comments section

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