From Tree Planting to Tree Growing: Rethinking Ecosystem Restoration Through Tree

Every year, millions of dollars are spent on tree-based landscape restoration activities. Over the last five decades, there are few success stories of such interventions and even those do not match the anticipated objectives for which the resources were spent. News articles that announce planting campaigns of millions of seedlings are common. Despite all this, in many countries, vegetation cover has not improved due to poor seedling survival rate. This makes the return on investment low. The objective of this paper is to highlight the main underlying challenges that need to be tackled to make restoration through tree-based interventions successful.