The origins of timber plantations in India

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This article assesses the origin and evolution of the Nilambur teak plantation in Malabar and the 'Australian' timber plantations on the Nilgiri plateau, two of the largest and most famous timber plantations in British India during the second half of the nineteenth century. The article argues that both timber plantations arose as part of the broader expansion of agricultural plantations and botanical gardens in southern India during the 1840s-1870s rather than developing from European forestry practices imported into India. By the end of the nineteenth century the difficulties and costs associated with establishing successful timber plantations outside of these two sites had led forestry officials to direct more resources towards regenerating India's indigenous forests. The success of the two pre-forestry plantations and the failure of plantations elsewhere in India suggests that forestry was less successful than has often been portrayed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98-118
Number of pages21
JournalAgricultural History Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • History and Philosophy of Science


Dive into the research topics of 'The origins of timber plantations in India'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this