Effects of a lucerne cover crop on the performance of eucalypts

Post authored by Jenna Roseveare

Agroforestry systems provide the opportunity to diversify products, mitigate risks and contribute to biodiversity conservation. These are some of the main motivations for Jenna’s project.

Eucalypts are generally fast growing, high nutrient demanding trees. This study will investigate the effects of a nitrogen fixing cover crop, lucerne, on the performance of two eucalypt hybrids (E. grandis x camaldulensis and E. grandis x urophylla). Height and diameter measurements are currently being recorded as well as stomatal conductance and soil moisture content. Biomass of both the eucalypts and lucerne will be harvested and analysed at the end of the project. This study will explore the possibility of mitigating nitrogen deficiencies and soil erosion in small- and large-scale eucalypt plantations; contributing to the sustainability and performance of these plantations.

We are excited to see how this study unfolds and what the results will look like!


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