Designing mixed species tree plantations for the tropics: balancing ecological attributes of species with landholder preferences in the Philippines

Nguyen, Huong, Lamb, David, Herbohn, John and Firn, Jennifer (2014) Designing mixed species tree plantations for the tropics: balancing ecological attributes of species with landholder preferences in the Philippines. PLoS ONE, 9 4: . doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0095267


Author Nguyen, Huong
Lamb, David
Herbohn, John
Firn, Jennifer
Title Designing mixed species tree plantations for the tropics: balancing ecological attributes of species with landholder preferences in the Philippines
Journal name PLoS ONE   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication date 2014-04-21
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0095267
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 9
Issue 4
Total pages 11
Place of publication San Francisco, CA, United States
Publisher Public Library of Science
Language eng
Abstract A mixed species reforestation program known as the Rainforestation Farming system was undertaken in the Philippines to develop forms of farm forestry more suitable for smallholders than the simple monocultural plantations commonly used then. In this study, we describe the subsequent changes in stand structure and floristic composition of these plantations in order to learn from the experience and develop improved prescriptions for reforestation systems likely to be attractive to smallholders. We investigated stands aged from 6 to 11 years old on three successive occasions over a 6 year period. We found the number of species originally present in the plots as trees >5 cm dbh decreased from an initial total of 76 species to 65 species at the end of study period. But, at the same time, some new species reached the size class threshold and were recruited into the canopy layer. There was a substantial decline in tree density from an estimated stocking of about 5000 trees per ha at the time of planting to 1380 trees per ha at the time of the first measurement; the density declined by a further 4.9% per year. Changes in composition and stand structure were indicated by a marked shift in the Importance Value Index of species. Over six years, shade-intolerant species became less important and the native shade-tolerant species (often Dipterocarps) increased in importance. Based on how the Rainforestation Farming plantations developed in these early years, we suggest that mixed-species plantations elsewhere in the humid tropics should be around 1000 trees per ha or less, that the proportion of fast growing (and hence early maturing) trees should be about 30-40% of this initial density and that any fruit tree component should only be planted on the plantation margin where more light and space are available for crowns to develop.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article number e95267

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Centre for Mined Land Rehabilitation Publications
School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Official 2015 Collection
 
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