Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 159–168 | Cite as

Alley cropping of maize with nine leguminous trees

  • R. C. Rosecrance
  • J. L. Brewbaker
  • J. H. Fownes


A maize-leguminous tree alley cropping system was studied on N-deficient soils in Hawaii to determine mulch effects on maize yields. Calliandra calothyrsus, Cajanus cajan, Cassia siamea, Gliciridia sepium, KX1 — Leucaena hybrid (L. pallida X L. diversifolia), L. leucocephala, L. pallida, L. salvadorensis, and Sesbania sesban were evaluated for green manure and yield of intercropped maize. S. sesban, G. sepium, L. pallida, and KX1 produced between 5 and 12 dry t/ha/yr green manure with nitrogen yields between 140 and 275 kg N/ha in 4 prunings.

Maize yields responded linearly to nitrogen applied as green manure. Maize yield increased 12 kg for each kg of nitrogen applied. Additions of prunings from hedge rows were able to support maize grain yields at about 1800 kg/ha for two consecutive cropping seasons, while control plot yields averaged less than 600 kg/ha. Maize yields reflected the amount of nitrogen applied as green manure, regardless of tree species from which the nitrogen was derived.

In March, maize yields decreased 34% in the row spaced 40 cm from the hedge, relative to the one spaced 110 cm away. In July, increasing the distance away from the hedge to 60 cm and coppicing the hedge earlier in maize growth, significantly improved grain yield. Grain yields decreased only 10% in the row closest to the trees.

Key words

alley cropping maize nitrogen fixing trees soil degradation traditional farming 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. C. Rosecrance
    • 1
  • J. L. Brewbaker
    • 2
  • J. H. Fownes
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PomologyUniversity of CaliforniaDavisUSA
  2. 2.Department of HorticultureUniversity of HawaiiHonoluluUSA
  3. 3.Department of AgronomyUniversity of HawaiiHonoluluUSA

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