Soil biological properties under different tree based traditional agroforestry systems in a semi-arid region of Rajasthan, India
An investigation was carried out in an Entisol at farmers’ field in Jaipur district, Rajasthan, India during 2002–2004 to evaluate the effect of traditionally grown trees on soil biological characteristics. Traditionally grown trees in farm lands for study consisted of Prosopis cineraria (L.), Dalbergia sissoo (Roxb.) ex DC, Acacia leucophloea (Roxb.) and Acacia nilotica (L.) Del. having a canopy diameter of 8 m. Results revealed significant and substantial improvement in soil biological activity in terms of microbial biomass C, N and P, dehydrogenase and alkaline phosphatase activity under different tree based agroforestry systems as compared to a no tree control (cropping alone). Soil microbial biomass C, N and P under agroforestry varied between 262–320, 32.1–42.4 and 11.6–15.6 μg g-1 soil, respectively, with corresponding microbial biomass C, N and P of 186, 23.2 and 8.4 μg g-1 soil under a no tree control.
Fluxes of C, N and P through microbial biomass were also significantly higher in P. cineraria based land use system followed by D. sissoo, A. leucophloea and Acacia nilotica in comparison to a no tree control. Thus, it is concluded that agroforestry system at farmers’ field enhance soil biological activity and amongst trees, P. cineraria based system brought maximum and significant improvement in soil biological activity.
Yadav, R.S., Yadav, B.L., Chhipa, B.R., Dhyani, S.K. & Munna Ram. (2011). Soil biological properties under different tree based traditional agroforestry systems in a semi-arid region of Rajasthan, India. Agroforestry Systems. 81: 195-202.
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