Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 18, Issue 3, pp 245–263 | Cite as

Observations on the rooting patterns of some agroforestry trees in an arid region of north-western India

  • O. P. Toky
  • R. P. Bisht


The present study deals with root architecture of 6-year-old trees of 9 indigenous and 3 exotic species growing in arid climate of north-western India. Observations, made on excavated root systems (3 tree replicates of each species) showed large variation in horizontal and vertical spread of roots. In Morus alba, Melia azedarach and Populus deltoides, the roots were confined to 80 cm, while in Prosopis cineraria, Acacia nilotica and Eucalyptus tereticornis, roots penetrated more deeply to 233 cm. The number of total roots ranged from 103 in Acacia catechu to 1932 in Eucalyptus tereticornis, and 62 to 80% of the roots were less than 2 mm in diameter. The primary roots were more horizontal than the secondary roots. The total root biomass varied from 2.2 kg in Acacia catechu to 30.6 kg−1 tree in Populus deltoides, and top 30 cm soil contained 42 to 78% of the total biomass. The implications of the results are discussed in the context of the ecological niche of the species, and its usefulness in agroforestry systems.

Key words

north-western India arid climate agroforestry trees rooting pattern root biomass 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • O. P. Toky
    • 1
  • R. P. Bisht
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ForestryHaryana Agricultural UniversityHisarIndia

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