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Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 1, Issue 4, pp 323–333 | Cite as

Potential contribution of Leucaena hedgerows intercropped with maize to the production of organic nitrogen and fuelwood in the lowland tropics

  • Filemon Torres
Article

Abstract

Available information is applied to formulate quantitative hypotheses on the impact of intercropping Leucaena hedgerows with maize upon the physical productivity of grain and fuelwood. Data would indicate that productivity of organic nitrogen (N) by Leucaena hedgerows cut approximately every 8 weeks at a height of 15–30 cm and planted at a distance between rows wider than 150 cm is 45 g m−1 yr−1. When soil-N availability is the limiting factor, utilization of Leucaena-N by the maize crop appears to be negatively related to baseline maize production. The grain: Leucaena-N ratio declines from 20:1, when maize productivity is in the order of 500 kg ha−1, to 3:1, when the 4000 kg level is achieved. Hedgerow N productivity, N utilization by the maize crop, and proportion of land planted to maize were used to derive yield estimates per area of intercropped land under different intercropping arrangement. It seems that the impact of hedge intercropping on maize productivity, although substantial, would be limited to systems where existing production levels of maize are lower than 1500 kg ha−1. As expected, production per hectare decreases as spacing between Leucaena hedgerows increases. For a 1000 kg ha−1 baseline, hypothetical increments expressed as percentage of baseline production range from 112% to 28% for between-hedgerow spacings of 1.5 and 6 m respectively. Information analyzed would indicate apotential for Leucaena hedgerow intercropping to increase maize productivity. Research required to substantiate the formulated hypotheses is discussed.

Key words

hedge intercropping Leucaena organic nitrogen 

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Copyright information

© Martinus Nijhoff/Dr. W. Junk Publishers 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Filemon Torres
    • 1
  1. 1.International Council for Research in Agroforestry (ICRAF)NairobiKenya

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