Biomass production capacity of Ageratina adenophora and its impact on associated herb species in Banj oak and Chir pine forest of Kumaun Himalaya


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Authors

Keywords:

Ageratina adenophora, biomass, competition, invasive, natives

Abstract

Growth rate is a vital trait for plants because both survival and reproduction depend on it. High growth rate, which is associated with high photosynthetic rate, has been found to contribute to invasiveness of some invasive plants. The impact imposed by invasive species on native co-occurring species depends specifically on interacting species competing for resources, density of each population and abiotic conditions. Therefore, in view of the above, the competitive effect of Ageratina adenophora on six native co-occurring species was assessed in two forest types viz., broad-leafed evergreen Banj oak forest (BO) and coniferous Chir pine (CP) forest in Nainital district of Kumaun Himalaya (part of Central Himalaya). In each forest type, three subplots of 20m × 20m size were established and five quadrats, each of 1m× 1m size were randomly placed in each sub-plots thus compounding to a total of 30 quadrats (2 forest × 3 subplots × 5 quadrats) were sampled using destructive method. Higher density of A. adenophora was recorded in CP (~110 ind. m-2) as compared to BO forest (~96 ind. m-2) which differed significantly (p<0.05) with native species density. On average aboveground and belowground biomass of A. adenophora was > 90% than the aboveground and belowground biomass of native co-occurring species. An inverse pattern of biomass allocation was recorded in two studied forest types. Correlation analysis revealed that biomass of most of the native species decreased with increasing biomass of A. adenophora though the impact was insignificant while Carex cruciata was the only species that recorded significant positive effect. To conclude compared with native herb species invasive A. adenophora had higher biomass contributing to carbon and energy gain in both the forest sites. The findings from study showed the potential mechanisms underlying growth advantage of A. adenophora over co-occurring native herbs.

Author Biographies

  • Bhawna Negi, Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

    Research Scholar

    Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

  • Kavita Khatri, Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

    Research Scholar

    Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

  • S.S. Bargali, Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

    Professor & Head

    Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

  • Kiran Bargali, Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

    Associate Professor

    Department of Botany, D.S.B Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital-263002, Uttarakhand, India

Submitted

06-09-2022

Published

26-12-2023

How to Cite

Biomass production capacity of Ageratina adenophora and its impact on associated herb species in Banj oak and Chir pine forest of Kumaun Himalaya. (2023). Indian Journal of Agroforestry, 25(2). https://epubs.icar.org.in/index.php/IJA/article/view/127767