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2 resultados encontrados para: AUTOR: Van den Meersche, Karel
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Resumen en: Inglés |
Resumen en inglés

In agroforestry systems, shade trees strongly affect the physiology of the undergrown crop. However, a major paradigm is that the reduction in absorbed photosynthetically active radiation is, to a certain extent, compensated by an increase in light-use efficiency, thereby reducing the difference in net primary productivity between shaded and non-shaded plants. Due to the large spatial heterogeneity in agroforestry systems and the lack of appropriate tools, the combined effects of such variables have seldom been analysed, even though they may help understand physiological processes underlying yield dynamics. In this study, we monitored net primary productivity, during two years, on scales ranging from individual coffee plants to the entire plot. Absorbed radiation was mapped with a 3D model (MAESPA). Light-use efficiency and net assimilation rate were derived for each coffee plant individually. We found that although irradiance was reduced by 60% below crowns of shade trees, coffee light-use efficiency increased by 50%, leaving net primary productivity fairly stable across all shade levels. Variability of aboveground net primary productivity of coffee plants was caused primarily by the age of the plants and by intraspecific competition among them (drivers usually overlooked in the agroforestry literature) rather than by the presence of shade trees.

Resumen en: Inglés |
Resumen en inglés

Background and Aims In Costa Rica, coffee (Coffea arabica) plants are often grown in agroforests. However, it is not known if shade-inducing trees reduce coffee plant biomass through root competition, and hence alter overall net primary productivity (NPP). We estimated biomass and NPP at the stand level, taking into account deep roots and the position of plants with regard to trees. Methods Stem growth and root biomass, turnover and decomposition were measured in mixed coffee/tree (Erythrina poeppigiana) plantations. Growth ring width and number at the stem base were estimated along with stem basal area on a range of plant sizes. Root biomass and fine root density were measured in trenches to a depth of 4 m. To take into account the below-ground heterogeneity of the agroforestry system, fine root turnover was measured by sequential soil coring (to a depth of 30 cm) over 1 year and at different locations (in full sun or under trees and in rows/inter-rows). Allometric relationships were used to calculate NPP of perennial components, which was then scaled up to the stand level. Key Results Annual ring width at the stem base increased up to 2·5 mm yr−1 with plant age (over a 44-year period). Nearly all (92 %) coffee root biomass was located in the top 1·5 m, and only 8 % from 1·5 m to a depth of 4 m. Perennial woody root biomass was 16 t ha−1 and NPP of perennial roots was 1·3 t ha−1 yr−1. Fine root biomass (0–30 cm) was two-fold higher in the row compared with between rows. Fine root biomass was 2·29 t ha−1 (12 % of total root biomass) and NPP of fine roots was 2·96 t ha−1 yr−1 (69 % of total root NPP). Fine root turnover was 1·3 yr−1 and lifespan was 0·8 years.

Conclusions Coffee root systems comprised 49 % of the total plant biomass; such a high ratio is possibly a consequence of shoot pruning. There was no significant effect of trees on coffee fine root biomass, suggesting that coffee root systems are very competitive in the topsoil.