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Provenance evaluation of Calliandra calothyrsus in the humid lowlands of Cameroon

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Calliandra calothyrsus has been reported to have potential for agroforestry in the humid lowlands of West and Central Africa. Provenance evaluation of the species was initiated in Yaounde Cameroon with the objective of identifying adapted provenances with desirable traits for inclusion in evaluation of the management of various agroforestry technologies being developed for the humid lowlands of the region. Fifteen provenance seed collections from Central America and southeast Asian sources were included in the trial. Results indicate that enormous genetic variation exists between these provenances. The highest yielding provenance produced 1.8 and 2.5 times respectively wood and leaf biomass compared to the lowest yielding provenance. Most of the provenances evaluated flowered during the first six months after establishment while all the provenances (15) flowered by the end of the first year. However this initial flowering did not result in productive pod development and seed setting. Two years after planting the trees were cut at a height of 0.05 m above ground level and more than 80% of the stumps of all the provenances re-sprouted. Leaf nitrogen content ranged between 2.25% and 2.78% of dry weight. Six provenances had above average values in at least five of the six desirable traits considered i.e.: height growth stem development leaf biomass wood biomass leaf litter productivity and total nitrogen content of leaves; these are recommended for further testing for inclusion in appropriate technologies for soil fertility improvement.
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    Duguma, B.; Mollet, M.


    Genetic variation, Selection, Soil chemicophysical properties, Provenance trials, Humid tropics, Calliandra

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