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Evaluation of eucalyptus growth in an agroforestry system and in monoculture: canopy architecture and growth rates

Grant number: 15/11675-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2016
Effective date (End): February 28, 2017
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Forestry Resources and Forestry Engineering - Forestry
Principal researcher:Ciro Abbud Righi
Grantee:Gabriella da Silva Ribeiro
Home Institution: Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALQ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil

Abstract

Eucalyptus spp. is the main tree used in pulp production around the world and is mainly grown in vast monocultures. However, due to environmental concerns, fear the decline in food production related to the size of the cultivated area, its location near human settlements and low job generation, eucalyptus cultivation is no longer encouraged in many regions of the country. Otherwise, these large plantations have the opportunity to integrate the eucalyptus in agroforestry systems (AFS) in a variety of production systems with many social, economic and environmental advantages. Thus, it is necessary to evaluate eucalyptus productivity in disparate production systems in order to establish the best recommendation to producers. This work aims to analyze eucalyptus growth rates in an silvipastoral system (SSP) compared to its monoculture, linking its growth to changes in canopy architecture. The experiment has four randomized blocks containing three treatments each: 1. Witness (monoculture); 2. SSP planted in alleys (tracks) with distance between rows of 42m and; 3. SSP with distance between rows of 24m. Dendrometers will be made and installed in 72 trees to fortnightly keep up with its growth. Trees characteristics (DBH, total height, trunk height and canopy width) will also be evaluated in all other trees of the system at the beginning and end of the experiment. The growth rates (mean and periodic annual increments - MAI and PAI) will be calculated for comparative verification purposes.

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