Atmospheric nitrogen fixation by gliricidia trees (Gliricidia sepium (Jacq.) Kunth ex Walp.) intercropped with cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.)
MetadataShow full item record
SubjectNitrogen fixation; 15N natural abundance; Legume trees; Green manures; Rhizobia; Shoot pruning
Aims: The objective was to estimate the fixation of atmospheric nitrogen (Ndfa) by legume (Gliricidia sepium) trees for the benefit of cocoa (Theobroma cacao) trees in agroforestry systems. Methods: Four sites where cocoa and gliricidia were intercropped and one site where gliricidia, cocoa, and orange trees were grown as separate stands were selected in Ghana. Ndfa in gliricidia and cocoa leaves (from all sites) and in shoot axes (in one site only) was assessed by the 15N natural abundance technique. Cocoa trees distant (less than 10 m) from the closest gliricidia were used as reference plants. Results: With few exceptions, leaves of gliricidia and cocoa trees growing in proximity had similar δ15N, whereas the foliar δ15N value of gliricidia was lower than that of distant cocoa trees. The Ndfa in gliricidia leaves ranged from 22 to 50% of total leaf N and was 48% in the shoot axis. Root nodules, found only after the wet season, always showed the inner red color indicating effective N2 fixation and the occurrence of Rhizobium tropici and Rhizobium etli. The annually produced shoots of gliricidia, theoretically suitable to become green manure after pruning, contained 31.4 to 38.0 kg N ha−1 derived from the atmosphere. Conclusions: Gliricidia sepium trees are able to take advantage of the association with rhizobial symbionts to fulfill, at least in part, the N needs of their rapidly growing shoots. In mixed-stand agroforestry systems, with intercropped gliricidia and cocoa trees, the amount of N derived from the atmosphere that could enter the soil if the pruned shoots of gliricidia trees are used as green manure could diminish the need for N fertilizers for cocoa trees.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
15Nitrogen natural abundance technique does not reveal nitrogen uptake from biological fixation in field grown carob (Ceratonia siliqua) trees Ventura, M; Gioacchini, P; Tribulato, E; Gentile, A; Tagliavini, M; La Malfa, S (ISHS, International Society for Horticultural Science, 2010)The presence in agroecosystems of plants able to develop symbiosis with nitrogen (N2) fixing microorganisms is encouraged as may decrease the need for mineral N fertilizers. Biological N2 fixation is widespread among ...
Untangling the effects of root age and tissue nitrogen on root respiration in Populus tremuloides at different nitrogen supply Ceccon C; Tagliavini M; Schmitt AO; Eissenstat DM (2016)Root respiration is a major contributor to terrestrial carbon flux. Many studies have shown root respiration to increase with an increase in root tissue nitrogen (N) concentration across species and study sites. Studies ...
Nitrogen uptake by ryegrass (Lolium perenne) as affected by the decomposition of apple leaves and pruning wood in soil Tagliavini, M; Tonon, G; Solimando, D; Gioacchini, P; Toselli, M; Boldreghini, P; Ciavatta, C (Wageningen Academic Publishers, 2004)