Tree species composition, diversity and soil organic carbon stock in homegardens and shifting cultivation fallows of Mizoram, Northeast India

Abstract

We examined tree species diversity and soil organic carbon (SOC) at different soil depth intervals (0–20, 20–50, 50–80, and 80–100 cm) of homegardens (HGs) and shifting cultivation fallows (SCFs) of Mizoram, Northeast India. Total tree species encountered in the sampled HGs and SCFs plots were 86 and 50 respectively. Significant differences (p < 0.05) in tree diversity and basal area was observed between different age categories of both land use systems. Tree diversity was inversely related to the age of homegardens, whereas a positive correlation (significant at p < 0.05) was observed with the increasing age in case of shifting cultivation fallows. On an average, SOC content in the older systems were significantly higher (p < 0.05) than the younger systems and small HGs had discernibly higher (p < 0.05) SOC than the large HGs. Highest SOC content was found in 0–20 cm and decreased with increasing soil depth. At 1 m soil depth, SOC stock was 183.42 and 123.24 Mg C ha− 1 in HGs and SCFs respectively. Values of SOC content were higher in HGs than the SCFs as a result of higher tree species composition and density. The study demonstrate that both HGs and SCFs, being tree based systems can sequester carbon and contribute to climate change mitigation.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

Availability of data and materials

The data will be available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

Code availability

Not applicable.

References

  1. Abu-hamdeh Nidal H, Al-Jalil Hamin F (1999) Hydraulically powered soil core sampler and its application to soil density and porosity estimation. Soil Tillage Res 52:113–120

    Google Scholar 

  2. Albrecht A, Kandji ST (2003) Carbon sequestration in tropical agroforestry systems. Agric Ecosyst Environ 99:15–27

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Anderson JM, Ingram JSI (1993) Tropical soil biology and fertility: a handbook of methods. CAB International, Oxford

    Google Scholar 

  4. Bardhan S, Jose S, Biswas S, Kabir K, Rogers W (2012) Homegarden agroforestry systems: an intermediary for biodiversity conservation in Bangladesh. Agrofor Syst 85:29–34

    Google Scholar 

  5. Batjes NH (1996) Total C and N in soils of the world. Eur J Soil Sci 47(2):151–163

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Bonner MTL, Schmidt S, Shoo LP (2013) A meta-analytical global comparison of aboveground biomass accumulation between tropical secondary forests and monoculture plantations. For Ecol Manag 291:73–86

    Google Scholar 

  7. Bos SPM, Cornioley T, Dray A, Waeber PO, Garcia CA (2020) Exploring livelihood strategies of shifting cultivation farmers in Assam through games. Sustainablility 12:2438. doi:https://doi.org/10.3390/su12062438

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Brady NC, Weil RR (2008) The nature and properties of soils, 14th edn. Pearson Education, New Jersey

    Google Scholar 

  9. Chazdon RL, Peres CA, Dent D, Sheil D, Lugo AE, Lamb D, Stork NE, Miller SE (2009) The potential for species conservation in tropical secondary forests. Conserv Biol 23:1406–1417

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. Connin SL, Virginia RA, Chamberlain CP (1997) Carbon isotopes reveal soil organic matter dynamics following arid land shrub expansion. Oecologia 110:374–386

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  11. Das T, Das AK (2005) Inventorying plant biodiversity in homegardens: a case study in Barak Valley, North East India. Curr Sci 89(1):155–163

    Google Scholar 

  12. Defrenet E, Roupsard O, Meersche KV, Carbonnier F et al (2016) Root biomass, turnover and net primary productivity of a coffee agroforestry system in Costa Rica: effect of soil depth, shade trees, distance to row and coffee age. Ann Bot 118(4):833–851. https://doi.org/10.1093/aob/mcw153

    Article  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  13. Erni C (2015) Shifting cultivation, livelihood and food security: new and old challenges for indigenous peoples in Asia. FAO for United Nations, Bangkok

    Google Scholar 

  14. Fernandes ECM, Nair PKR (1986) An evolution of the structure and function of tropical homegardens. Agrofor Syst 21:279–310

    Google Scholar 

  15. Fernandes-Nunez E, Rigueiro-Rodriguez A, Mosquera-Losada MR (2010) C allocation dynamics one decade after afforestation with Pinus radiate D. Don and Betula alba L. under two stand densities in NW Spain. Ecol Eng 36(7):876–890

    Google Scholar 

  16. Fisher RA (1935) The design of experiments. Oliver and Boyd, Edinburg, p x + 252

    Google Scholar 

  17. Gbedomon RC, Salako VK, Fandohan AB, Idohou RFR, Kakai RG, Assogbadjo AE (2017) Functional diversity of homegardens and their agrobiodiversity conservation benefits in Benin, West Africa. J Ethnobiol Ethnomed 13:66. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-017-0192-5

    Article  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  18. Gentry A (1988) Changes in plant community diversity and floristic composition on environmental and geographical gradients. Ann Miss Bot Gard 75:1–34 ()

    Google Scholar 

  19. George MV, Christopher G (2020) Structure, diversity and utilization of plant species in tribal homegardens of Kerala, India. Agrofor Syst 94:297–307 ()

    Google Scholar 

  20. Goodwind AN (2004) Measuring tall tree heights from the ground. Tasforests 15:85–97

    Google Scholar 

  21. Gogoi A, Sahoo UK, Saikia H (2020) Vegetation and ecosystem carbon recovery following shifting cultivation in Mizoram–Manipur–Kachin rainforest eco-region, southern Asia. Ecol Process 9:21. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13717-020-00225-w

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Guerrero C, Gomez L, Solera JM, Moral R, Beneyto JM, Hernandez MT (2000) Effect of solid waste compost on microbiological and physical properties of a burnt forest soil in field experiments. Biol Fert Soils 32:410–414 ()

    Google Scholar 

  23. Haile SG, Nair PKR, Nair VD (2008) Carbon storage of different soil-size fractions in Florida silvopastoral systems. J Environ Qual 37:1789–1797

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  24. IPCC (2003) International panel on climate change: good practice guidance for land use, land-use change and forestry. In: Penman J, Gytarsky M, Hiraishi T, Krug T, Kruger D, Pipatti R, Buen-dia L, Miwa K, Ngara T, Tanabe T, Wagner F (eds). IPCC National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Programme and Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), Hayama

  25. Kent M, Coker P (1992) Vegetation description and analysis: a practical approach. Wiley, New York, p 623

    Google Scholar 

  26. Kirby KR, Porviu C (2007) Variation in carbon storage among tree species: implications for the management of a small-scale carbon sink project. For Ecol Manag 246:208–221

    Google Scholar 

  27. Klanderud K, Mbolatina HZH, Vololomboahangy MN, Radimbison MA, Roger E, Totland O, Rajeriarison C (2010) Recovery of plant species richness and composition after slash and burn agriculture in a tropical rainforest in Madagascar. Biodivers Conserv 19:187–204

    Google Scholar 

  28. Kotto-Same J, Moukam A, Njomgang R, Tiki-Manga T, Tonye J, Diaw C, Gockowski J, Hauser S, Weise S, Nwaga D, Zapfack L, Palm C, Woomer P, Gillison Andy, Bignell D, Tondoh J (2002) Alternatives to slash-and-burn: summary report and synthesis of phase II in Cameroon ASB Programme. ICRAF

  29. Kumar BM, Nair PKR (2004) The enigma of tropical homegardens. Agrofor Syst 61:135–152

    Google Scholar 

  30. Kumar BM, George SJ, Chinnamanis S (1994) Diversity, structure and standing stock of wood in the homegardens of Kerala in Peninsular India. Agrofor Syst 25:243–262

    Google Scholar 

  31. Le Quere C, Andres RJ, Boden T et al (2012) The global carbon budget 1959–2011. Earth Syst Sci Data Discuss 5:1107–1157

    Google Scholar 

  32. Magurran AN (2004) Measuring biological diversity. Blackwell Science Ltd. Melden, USA

    Google Scholar 

  33. Margalef R (1958) Information theory in ecology. Int J Gen Syst 3:36–71

    Google Scholar 

  34. Matos ES, Freese D, Mendonca ES, Slazak A, Huttl RF (2010) C, nitrogen and organic C fractions in topsoil affected by conversion from silvipastoral to different land use systems. Agrofor Syst 8(3):203–211

    Google Scholar 

  35. Mbow C, Smith P, Skole D, Duguma L, Bustamante M (2014) Achieving mitigation and adaptation to climate change through sustainable agroforestry practices in Africa. Curr Opin Environ Sustain 6:8–14

    Google Scholar 

  36. Misra R (1968) Ecology workbook. Oxford and IBH Publishing Co., New Delhi

    Google Scholar 

  37. Mohan S, Nair PKR, Long AJ (2007) An assessment of the ecological diversity of homegardens: a case study of Kerala State, India. J Sust Agric 29(4):135–153

    Google Scholar 

  38. Montagini F, Nair PKR (2004) Carbon sequestration: an under-exploited environmental benefit of agroforestry systems. Agrofor Syst 61(1–3):281–298

    Google Scholar 

  39. Morris RJ (2010) Anthropogenic impacts on tropical forest biodiversity: a network structure and ecosystem functioning perspective. Phil Trans R Soc B 365:3709–3718

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  40. Mosquera-Losada MR, Cuina Cotarelo R, Rigueiro-Rodrriguez A (2011) Effect of understorey vegetation management through liming and sewage sluge fertilization on soil fertility and Pinus radiata D Don growth after reforestation. Eur J For Res 130(6):997–1008

    Google Scholar 

  41. Mueller-Dombois D, Ellenberg H (1974) Aims and methods in vegetation analysis. Wiley, New York

    Google Scholar 

  42. Mukul SA, Herbohn J (2016) The impacts of shifting cultivation on secondary forests dynamics in tropics: a synthesis of the key findings and spatio temporal distribution of research. Environ Sci Policy 55:167–177

    Google Scholar 

  43. Nair PKR, Kumar BM, Nair VD (2009) Agroforestry as a strategy for carbon sequestration. L Plant Nutr Soil Sci 172(1):10–23

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  44. NRSC (2010) Remote sensing applications. National Remote Sensing Centre, Hyderbad

    Google Scholar 

  45. Padalia H, Chauhan N, Porwal MC, Roy PS (2004) Phytosociological observations on tree species diversity of Andaman Islands, India. Curr Sci 87:799–806 ()

    Google Scholar 

  46. Pernitsky T, Bing WH, Si BC, Barbour L (2015) Effects of petroleum hydrocarbon concentration and bulk density on the hydraulic properties of lean oil sand overburden. Can J Soil Sci 96:435–446. https://doi.org/10.1139/cjss.2015.0126

    Article  Google Scholar 

  47. Peyre AA, Guidal A, Wiersum KF, Bongers F (2006) Dynamics of homegarden structure and function in Kerala, India. Agrofor Syst 66(2):101–115. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10457-005-2919-x

    Article  Google Scholar 

  48. Ranjan R, Upadhyay VP (1999) Ecological problems due to shifting cultivation. Curr Sci 7(10):1246–1250

    Google Scholar 

  49. Reddy ENV, Devakumar AS, Charan Kumar ME, Madhusudana MK (2012) Assessment of nutrient turnover and soil fertility of natural forests of Central Western Ghats. Int J Sci Nat 3(1):162–166

    Google Scholar 

  50. Saha S, Nair PKR, Nair VD, Kumar BM (2009) Soil carbon stock in relation to plant diversity of homegardens in Kerala, India. Agrofor Syst 76:53–65

    Google Scholar 

  51. Sahoo UK (2009) Traditional home gardens and livelihood security in North-east India. J Food Agric Environ 7(2):665–670

    Google Scholar 

  52. Sahoo UK, Rocky P, Vanlalhriatpuia K, Upadhyaya K (2010) Structural diversity and functional dynamism of traditional homegardens of North-East India. Bioscan Spec Issue 1:159–179

    Google Scholar 

  53. Sahoo UK, Rocky P, Vanlalhriatpuia K, Upadhyaya K (2012) Species composition, production and energetic sustainability of homegardens in the highlands of Eastern Mizoram, India . Tree For Sci Biotechnol 6:81–82

    Google Scholar 

  54. Saikia P, Khan ML (2016) Tree species diversity and its population and regeneration structure in homegardens of upper Assam, Northeast India. J For Environ Sci 32(2):129–139. https://doi.org/10.7714/JFES.2016.32.2.129

    Article  Google Scholar 

  55. Saikia P, Choudhury BI, Khan ML (2012) Floristic composition and plant utilization pattern in homegardens of upper Assam. India Trop Ecol 53(1):105–118

    Google Scholar 

  56. Schmook B (2010) Shifting maize cultivation and secondary vegetation in the Southern Yucatan: successional forest impacts temporal intensification. Reg Environ Change 10:233–246

    Google Scholar 

  57. Shannon CE, Wiener W (1963) The mathematical theory of communications. University of Illinois Press, Urbana

    Google Scholar 

  58. Stagnari F, Maggio A, Galieni A, Pisante M (2017) Multiple benefits of legumes for agricultural sustainability: an overview. Chem Biol Technol Agric. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40538-016-0085-1

    Article  Google Scholar 

  59. Tharammal T, Bala G, Devaraju N, Nemani R (2019) A review of the major drivers of the terrestrial carbon uptake: model-based assessments, consensus and uncertainties. Environ Res Lett 14:093005. doi:https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/ab3012

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  60. Tilman D, KnopsJ,Wedin DA, Reich PB, Ritchie M, Siemann E (1997) The influence of functional diversity and composition on ecosystem processes. Science 277:1300–1302

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  61. Thong P, Sahoo UK, Thangjam U, Pebam R (2020) Pattern of forest recovery and carbon stock following shifting cultivation in Manipur, Northeast India. PLoS One 15(10):e0239906. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0239906

    CAS  Article  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  62. Tynsong H, Tiwari BK (2010) Plant diversity in the homegardens and their significance in the livelihoods of War Khasi Community of Meghalaya, North-east India. J Biodivers 1(1):1–11

    Google Scholar 

  63. Valencia R, Balsev H, Paz y Mino G, (1994) High tree alpha-diversity in Amazonian Ecuador. Biodivers Conserv 3:21–28

    Google Scholar 

  64. Van Noordwijk M, Lawson G, Soumare A, Groot JJR, Hairiah K (1996) Root distribution of trees and crops: competition and/or complementarities. In: Ong C, Ong K, Huxley P (eds) Tree–crop interactions. CAB International, Oxon, pp 319–364

    Google Scholar 

  65. Vandermeer J (1989) The ecology of intercropping. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge

    Google Scholar 

  66. Vashisth BB, Mahrjan B, Sharma S, Kaur S (2020) Soil quality and its potential indicators under different land use systems in the Shivaliks of Indian Punjab. Sustainability 12:3480. doi:https://doi.org/10.3390/su12083490

    Article  Google Scholar 

  67. Walkley A, Black IA (1934) An examination of degtjareff method for determining soil organic matter and a proposed modification of the chromic acid titration method. Soil Sci 37:29–37

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  68. Warren JM, Hanson PJ, Iversen CM, Kumar J, Walker AP, Wullschleger SD (2014) Root structural and functional dynamics in terrestrial biosphere models-evaluation and recommendations. New Phytol. doi:https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.13034

    Article  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgements

This study was funded by the Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, New Delhi to UKS (Grant No.: DST/IS-STAC/CO2-SR-227/14(G)-AICP-AFOLU-IV). SLS wishes to thank the DST, New Delhi for granting him an INSPIRE fellowship to carry out this research. We wish to thank the shifting cultivation and homegarden farmers who allowed us to collect sample from their fields.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Uttam Kumar Sahoo.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Ethics approval

Not applicable.

Consent to participate

Not applicable.

Consent for publication

Not applicable.

Additional information

Publisher’s note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Supplementary Information

Below is the link to the electronic supplementary material.

Supplementary file1 (DOCX 37 KB)

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Singh, S.L., Sahoo, U.K. Tree species composition, diversity and soil organic carbon stock in homegardens and shifting cultivation fallows of Mizoram, Northeast India. Vegetos 34, 220–228 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s42535-021-00194-1

Download citation

Keywords

  • Biodiversity
  • Plant community
  • Species richness
  • Soil nutrients
  • Carbon pools