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AICRP on Agroforestry


Brief Research Achievements

Diagnostic and design survey to identify indigenous agroforestry practices being followed by the farmers in different regions of the country has been completed and published in the form of a book entitled “Agroforestry systems in India – A  Diagnostic and Design Approach”. The important findings of the survey are:

  • Germplasm collection, provenance trial and selection of promising multipurpose trees with wider genetic base for their growth, productivity and coppicing power.
  • Mass propagation of superior phenotypes and their certification to meet demand of planting material of proven quality.
  • Design and development of agroforestry models for undulating and erosion prone areas and different altitudes and slope aspect in the Himalayan, coastal and arid regions.
  • Study of species composition, biomass productivity and nutrient cycling in agroforestry systems to understand its sustainability issues.
  • Design and develop bio-economic models for sensitizing investment and policies for agroforestry development.
  • Study on market demands, industry requirements and the species suitability and livelihoods need of people. Agroforestry interventions based on the concept of wood catchments for the industry have a greater promise for mass scale adoption by the land holders since it assures remunerative price and definite market potential.

Multipurpose Trees are more or less integral part of agroforestry farming systems. They provide various uses such as food, fodder, timber, fuelwood, medicines, resins, gums, etc. Besides, they also provide indirect benefits such as biological nitrogen fixation, Vascicular Arbuscular Mycorrhizal (VAM) symbiosis, reduction in soil erosion, increase in water percolation etc. in the form of environment improvement. Two MPTS have been allotted to each coordinating centre of the project for the collection and evaluation of their germplasm. The MPTs were allotted based on the findings of the D & D survey, local suitability and preference, monitoring agencies suggestions (QRTs and other review committees)  and deliberations among the scientists during annual group meetings. The complete list of MPTS allotted to each coordinating centre is given below :

MPTS allotted to centres of AICRPAF for germplasm collection and evaluation.

Name of the centre

MPTS allotted

SKUAS&T, Srinagar

Ulmus spp., Morus alba

YSPUH&F, Solan

Grewia optiva, Morus alba

AAU,HRS, Kahi kuchi

Acacia auriculiformis, Acacia mangium, Terminalia spp.

PAU, Ludhiana

 Populus deltoides, Melia spp., Eucalyptus

GBPUA&T, Pantnagar

Populus deltoides, Anthocephalus cadamba

NDUA&T, Faizabad

Casuarina equisetifolia, Dalbergia sissoo

RAU, Pusa

Acacia lenticularis, Bombax ceiba


Populus deltoides, Dalbergia sissoo

SDAU, SK Nagar

Ailanthus excelsa, Azadirachta indica

SKNAU, RRS, Fatehpur-Shekhawati

Dalbergia sissoo, Prosopis cineraria

PDKV, COA, Nagpur

Bambusa spp., Tectona grandis

MPKV, Rahuri

Acacia nilotica, Azadirachta indica

ANGRAU, Hyderabad

Annona squamosa, Azadirachta indica

JNKVV, Jabalpur

Acacia nilotica, Dalbergia sissoo

OUAT, Bhubaneshwar

Acacia mangium, Dalbergia sissoo

BCKV, Jhargram

Acacia auriculiformis, Leucaena leucocephala

BAU, Ranchi

Acacia mangium, Gmelina arborea

FCRI, TNAU, Mettupulayam

Melia dubia, Ceiba pentandra

UAS, Dharwad

Azadirachta indica, Tamarindus indica

BSKKV, Dapoli

Acacia auriculiformis, Acacia mangium, Gliricidia sepium

KAU, Thrissur

Acacia mangium, Tectona grandis

TNVASU, Kattapukkam

Azadirachta indica, Gliricidia sepium

UAS, Bangalore (Karnataka)

Simarouba glauca, Tamarindus indica

CSKHPKV, Palampur (HP)

Toona ciliata, Sapindus mukorossi

UAHS, Shimoga (Karnataka)

Gmelina, Garcinia

SKUAS&T, Jammu (J & K)

Terminalia, Celtis, Toona

The important agroforestry practices identified for different regions are  (1) Grewia optiva, Ulmus wallichiana, Morus alba, Salix, Robina pseudoacacia, Sapindus mukorossi, Toona ciliata and Poplar in Western Himalayan region; Acacia auriculiformis, Alnus nepalensis, Bamboos, Parasarianthes falcataria and Gmelina arborea for Eastern Himalayan region; (2) Populus, Eucalyptus, Mango and Dalbergia sisoo in Indo-gangetic region; (3) Dalbergia sissoo, Acacia tortilis, A. nilotica, Ailanthus excelsa, Prosopis cineraria, Leucaena leucocephala and Azadirachta indica for arid and semi arid regions; (4) Acacia nilotica, Prosopis cineraria and Zizyphus in western India: (5) Tectona grandis, Tamarindus indica, Melia dubia, Hevea brasilensis in southern region; and  (6) Albizia spp., Gmelina arborea, Gliricidia, Acacia auriculiformis for humid and sub humid regions; (7) Artocarpus, Azadirachta indica, Casuarina equisetifolia, Grevillea robusta and bamboos in coastal and island region.


Zone Wise Brief Achievements

  • Development of scab resistant Populus deltoides clone by Srinagar centre.
  • Developed a silvipasture system based on Grewia, Morus. Sapindus alongwith Napier and Setaria using gradonii soil working technique, which is widely adopted by the farmers, forest department and NGOs working in the plantation sector
  • Introduction of Paulownia fortunii in Kashmir and Uttrakhand.
  • Seedling seed orchard comprising 60 families of Grewia optiva established at Solan.
  • Prepared the local volume equations/volume table for 12 MPTs viz., Gmelina arborea, Melia composita, Acrocarpus fraxinifolius, Alnus nitda, Dalbergia sissoo, Acer oblongum, Bauhinia variegata, Robinia pseudoacacia, Ulmus villosa, Toona ciliata and Acacia catechu.
  • Standardization of nursery technology of Morus alba, Grewia optiva and Ulmus wallichiana.
  • Participatory mapping Technique to analyze farmers’ perception in adoption of an agroforestry tree.
  • Developed Bambusa tulda and balcooa based systems for lower Himalayan region belt of Assam.
  • Interspaces of fruit bearing coconut( > 20 year old) was utilized successfully in lower Himalayan region belt of Assam by growing rice seedling in kharif, followed by growing sorghum, maize and oat as fodder crop in rabi
  • Model Bari (Homestead) system including vegetable, fruit trees, coconut, arecanut, Bay leaf and black pepper developed for Assam.
  • Recommended two poplar clones (L-48/89 and L-47/88) for commercial cultivation in Punjab
  • Standardized cultural and management practices for poplar based agroforestry system for tree row direction and spacing; different crop rotations, wheat varieties and their agro-techniques,  insect pest control measures etc.
  • Paired row planting (18x2x2 m) of poplar has been found to give maximum yield of intercrops.
  • Standardized the doze of zinc sulphate to ameliorate the Zn deficiency in poplar nursery and plantations.
  • Standardized fertilizer requirement for eucalyptus and poplar plants with respect to amount, timings and method of application throughout different growth years.
  • Recommended making water channels along the rows of poplar trees during ‘rabi’ season to protect plants from water stress during wheat maturity and harvesting.
  • Cluster analysis of SSR data using UPGMA separated 147 clones of Poplar into 6 major clusters at 0.60 similarity coefficient. The microsatellite data suggests that the clones of deltoides have a broad genetic base and could be useful for poplar breeding and plantation programs.
  • Registration of superior poplar clone “PP-5” at NBPGR for higher growth (INGR11053). “Pant Poplar-5” clone having higher productivity and tolerance to blight and stem borer as compared to national checks (G-3, G-48 and D-121) has been  recommended to the farmers of the Tarai
  • Superior Shisham germplasm stock PS-52 registered at NBPGR (INGR11052) for higher height and diameter growth and straight bole. This genetic stock has also shown resistance to mortality and has a straight bole.
  • Gamma rays (physical mutation) induced fast growth and earliness in flowering and fruiting of Pongamia pinnata (karanj).
  • Phenological characteristics of different MPTS of North Bihar in terms of leaf drop, leaf flush, vegetative growth, fruit formation and seed maturation have been
  • Based on AICRP on AF centres recommendation farmers have adopted poplar based agroforestry system on large scale and earned high economic returns. This has led to significant increase in area under Trees Outside Forests (TOFs).
  • In terms of growth, volume yield as well as soil improvement Gmelina arborea is best under red and laterite soils of the zone.
  • Acacia mangium most preferred MPT producing 5-6 cft of timber after 10 years worth Rs 2500-3000.
  • Fodder guinea grass found to be more compatible than stylo in rainfed areas and produces 17 t/ha of fodder with net return Rs.14700/ha in guava and Acacia mangium based horti-silvipasture system.
  • Plantation of sissoo at 5x5m spacing for producing quality timber wood not only restore the red lateritic wasteland but also produce 2.08 t ha-1 fresh Lemon grass as cover crop for three years with three cuttings in a year.
  • Turmeric, ginger, colocasia and elephant foot yam can be successfully grown in the interspaces of Litchi orchard even at the age of ten years with 6.5–23.6% reduction in yield for turmeric, 12.4–38.2% for ginger, 9.8–30.2% for colocasia and 22.5–40.5% for elephant foot yam. These reductions can be compensated by the additional yield of Litchi showing approximately 35% more yield as compared to the pure orchard.
  • Development of Eucalyptus variety SRY-16 (Yashwant) through tissue culture and distribution of seedling among the farmer for agroforestry system, and extraction of eucalyptus oil from leaves by direct steam method.
  • In Shisham PT-2 and PT -6, have been identified for the Bundelkhand region with characteristics of fast growth and straight stem.
  • In Neem two germplasm have been identified, one with high Azadirachtin content and the other for high oil content and being tested under multi-location trials.
  • Agroforestry database ( has been developed with an objective to bring the scattered information on agroforestry research at one plate on internet which can be accessed by the users on-line and round the clock.
  • Development of Phule technique (Continuous Contour Trench (CCT)) by forming bunds of about 1m height by excavating trench of 60 x 30 cm and refilling it with in situ soil on sloppy land for tree plantation in arid and semi arid region of Maharashtra and created awareness among the farmers.
  • The Ailanthus excelsa based agrisilviculture system (with green gram ) is the most preferred system by the farmers in Rajasthan and Gujarat.
  • Cowpea + curry leaf + moringa system in kharif season in Mango based agroforestry system followed by safflower in rabi season identified as promising system for semi-arid region of Telangana.
  • Dichrostachys cinerea based silvi-pastoral model has been found most suitable for uncultivable and community pasture lands of arid and semi arid areas. Biomass yield of 0.32 t/ha/yr may be obtained when cinerea planted at 5 x 1 m spacing with Cenchrus ciliaris in between the D. cinerea row.
  • Maximization of crop productivity and soil fertility improvement with inter crops castor in kharif and sweet sorghum in rabi in Pongamia based cropping system with the integrated use of 75% RDF + vermicompost @ 2 t ha-1 (or) 25% N through poultry manure.
  • Growing teak at 10 or 20 m row spacing (with 2 m spacing between2 teak) and planting papaya between 2 teak plants (for initial 3 years) and growing field crops (viz, sorghum and groundnut) in the interspace of teak rows gave three times higher average net returns as compared to only field crops in Karnataka. The reduction in the yield of field crops was compensated by teak.
  • Productivity of Melia azadirach was higher when grown in 5 x 4 m spacing. The system is economically viable as net returns and BCR were higher in Melia azadirach at 5×4 m + field crop raised in the inter space (Rs.10502/ha/yr and 1.86:1 respectively) as compared to the control.
  • Growth and productivity of Acacia mangium was higher with the application of fertilizer (75:150:75 NPK g/plant) with 4 x 1 m spacing.
  • Drought tolerant Ceiba pentendra genotypes identified for rainfed regions of Tamil Nadu
  • Multi Location Trial in Melia dubia initiated at 8 coordinating centres of AICRP on AF.
  • Integrated Tree Fodder model comprising intercrops Gliricidia sepium, Sesbania grandiflora, Melia dubia and Leucaena leucocephala with Casuarina MTP2 as the main crop yielded a B:C ratio of 2.97
  • Black pepper production system with Acacia auriculiformis and Artocarpus heterophyllus as support trees was evolved for humid high rainfall areas.
  • Profitability maximization in mature Acacia mangium plantations through sub-canopy intercrops.
  • High yielding genotypes/clones in Simarouba and Tamarind are identified and clonal seed orchard are established
  • One ha watershed based  Integrated Farming System with agroforestry under rainfed ecosystem is developed and demonstrations are conducted for Karnataka.
  • Integration of Leucaena leucocephala at 2x2m spacing in Napier-Bajra hybrid fodder production system yielded 12.03, 34.49 and 11.83 % higher dry fodder biomass, digestible protein and total digestible nutrients respectively compared to Napier-Bajra hybrid grass without silvi component. If leucocephala  leaves were used as fodder source instead concentrate feed, 70 lambs weighing 18-20 kg mean body weight could be maintained in one hectare L. leucocephala  + Napier-Bajra hybrid grass fodder production system and could save the concentrate feed expenditure of Rs. 20,660/-
  • Data base on tree leaves feeding to ruminant animals has been developed by Kattupakam centre.