Farmers and crofters are being offered a share of a £1 million cash pot to encourage them to become involved in forestry.
Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said increased levels of tree planting could boost Scotland’s efforts to tackle climate change and help the rural economy as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.
The money is the first batch of funding from the Agriculture Transformation Programme.
This is a key programme for government commitment that aims to support the agriculture sector in helping Scotland meet its greenhouse gas emissions targets and will be used to help farmers establish new small-scale woodlands.
It comes on top of funds announced last week by Scottish Forestry to assist land managers in buying forestry and timber processing equipment.
Mr Ewing said: “To meet our ambitious climate change targets and help to adapt to the effects already being felt, it is important that we support farmers and crofters in planting and managing forestry on their land.”
The funding announcement comes after the appointment of Helen McKay as Scotland’s new chief forester.
Dr McKay currently provides scientific and strategic leadership to the Centre for Sustainable Forestry and Climate Change and she will provide technical and professional advice on forestry matters to Scottish Government ministers.
She said: “I am looking forward immensely to working as chief forester for Scotland.
“Times are undoubtedly challenging because of Covid-19 in addition to climate change, pests and diseases as well as Brexit.
“On the other hand, such challenges can bring the sector together to further strengthen the forestry profession and demonstrate its value to Scotland.”