Coach House Geography

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The Super Tree

Posted by Lindy on August 28, 2009

From an article by Ochieng’ Ogodo on 27 August 2009Acacia super tree

African farmers could triple yields by planting a type of acacia tree that sheds its nitrogen-rich leaves in time for the growing season alongside their crops.

“Besides organic fertiliser and livestock fodder for farmers, it also acts as a windbreak, provides wood for fuel and construction and cuts erosion by loosening the soil to absorb water during the rainy season. The tree becomes dormant and sheds its leaves during the early rainy season at the time when seeds need fertiliser and regrows them at the beginning of the dry season, so not competing with crops for light” he said at the 2nd World Congress of Agroforestry in Nairobi this week.

Planting the trees can nearly triple yields, he says. In Malawi, maize yields under the acacia canopy are 280 per cent higher than outside it.


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