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Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 47–70 | Cite as

Structure and function of traditional agroforestry systems in the western Himalaya. I. Biomass and productivity

  • Om Parkash Toky
  • Pradeep Kumar
  • Prem Kumar Khosla
Article

Abstract

Species composition, biomass, and productivity patterns of three types of traditional agroforestry systems, namely, agrisilvicultural, agrihorticultural, and agrihortisilvicultural, commonly practiced in the western Himalaya, were studied. Species composition in the systems varied depending upon the size of the land holdings, and the basic requirements of the farmer. Among three systems agrihortisilvicultural was highly diverse in vegetation, with as many as 13 tree and 5 agricultural crops mixed together. This system showed the highest productivity up to 25.8 t ha−1 yr−1, out of which 68 percent was contributed by the trees and the remainder by the annuals. Agrisilvicultural system having predominantly annuals had the lowest productivity of 20.4 t ha−1 yr−1 with only 27 percent contribution by the trees. Total aboveground biomass in agrihortisilvicultural or agrihorticultural system was around 48 t ha−1 and it was about 2-fold higher than agrisilvicultural system. In fodder trees, a significant percentage of annual production, up to 48 percent, was allocated in current twigs, while in horticultural trees a major portion, up to 63 percent was partioned towards fruits. Implications of the results have been discussed in context with the growing problems of fuel, fodder, and packaging material in the western Himalaya.

Key words

Western Himalaya traditional agroforestry systems species composition biomass productivity 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Om Parkash Toky
    • 1
  • Pradeep Kumar
    • 2
  • Prem Kumar Khosla
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of ForestryHaryana Agricultural UniversityHisarIndia
  2. 2.Department of Tree Improvement and Genetic ResourcesDr. Y.S. Parmar University of Horticulture and ForestryIndia

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