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Swietenia macrophylla (mahogany) is native to North America and now it covers a wide range of terrestrial areas in the world including tropical countries. The suitability of mahogany as a plantation crop has led to established 200, 000 ha of plantations worldwide, with extensive areas in Fiji and Philippines (Platino, 1997). In Sri Lanka private sector also started to establish mahogany monocultures especially in the intermediate zone and low country wet zone. However mahogany plantations in the country have not been able to most productive to attract further financial out comes. Nevertheless, information on growth of mahogany is not readily available in Sri Lanka. Since as a solution for this, need to establish appropriate management guidelines for mahogany monoculture plantations. Prior to introduce such management strategies, necessities are identifying growth rates and growth differences of plantation crop of mahogany. Hence this study concerning with distribution of breast height diameter (dbh) of mahogany trees growing in different site types with their age is vital requirement for the plantation sector. Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla) is an exotic tree, which is heavily adapted to the climatic conditions of wet and intermediate zones of Sri Lanka. Although the state sector manages mahogany with longer rotations, private sector expects to achieve the maximum timber yield within a shorter period. Due to the land scarcity, many of these mahogany plantations have been established in barren and rubber uprooted lands which were heavily degraded. Therefore the soil conditions and site factors directly affect the growth of the mahogany within short rotations.
I. METHODS OF PROPAGATION Planting materials may be propagated either from seeds or vegetative parts of plants.
A. SEEDS OR SEXUAL PROPAGATION
A seedling is a nursery-grown planting material developed from a seed. While most of the nurserygrown seedlings are healthy, some may have defects/ imperfections. These defects may or may not be visible to the eye. Healthy seedlings come from superior seeds. Superior seeds come from selected mother trees. From such source, healthy seedlings ensure higher survival rate and will grow to be vigorous and productive trees. A mother tree has the following characteristics:
Height: the tree is the tallest in the stand of trees Diameter: the diameter of the bole is as big as possible for the species Bole: the bole or trunk of the tree is straight from the base to the top Crown: has well-balanced crown Branches: they are equally distributed and relatively perpendicular to the bole Health: the tree is free from pests, diseases and defects
It is free from injuries such as torn leaves, broken/bent stems, and a nick or a cut on the stem. It is free from diseases such as abnormal development and discoloration of plant parts. It is free from insect infestation such as the presence of ants, grasshoppers, butterfly larvae that usually eat their leaves/stem. It has a relatively thick or woody stem. It has a well-balanced shoot and root ratio. This means that the shoot should be proportionate to the root system to balance the intake and loss of water. For a bareroot seedling, it has a firm and fresh rootsystem with many rootlets.
and towards the end. such as Kamagong (Diospyros philippinensis). Agoho (Casuarina equisetifolia). Collect fruits that fall during the peak of the fruiting season to ensure higher viability of the seeds. decayed and/or germinated seeds. of the fruiting season are usually inferior. Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla). Seed Collection There are three ways to collect fruits/seeds from selected mother trees: Collection from the ground This practice is common for trees with fruits that fall to the ground after maturity. . Gather fruits and seeds right after they have fallen to avoid the risk of collecting immature. Bagras (Eucalyptus deglupta). Tree climbing is necessary for tall trees with small seeds such as Molave (Vitex parviflora). Collection from standing trees Gather fruits/seeds from standing trees by climbing trees either with a safety belt or with the aid of a rope tied on the bare feet. Ladders can also be used to pick the fruits/seeds. and Katmon (Dillenia philippinensis).Ensure healthy seedlings thru proper procedures/ technologies Healthy seedlings can be produced through proper procedures and technologies. or Banaba (Lagerstroemia specbsa). Santol (Sandoricum koetjape). Seeds from fruits collected during the initial.
Collect seeds from fruits or pods that have fallen to the ground before they begin to open and/or germinate.Collection by shaking branches Another way of collection is by shaking the branches of the tree either manually or with the aid of a rope tied at the tip of the branches. Extract the seeds from the collected fruits and immediately dry them for easier storage and transport. Those seeds that are carried by air will not germinate. Seeds that float are empty and therefore will not germinate. separate the seeds from impurities through any of the following methods: Floatation Submerge the seeds in water. In addition. . (Refer to Seed Collection Calendar in Annex A) Seed Processing Process the seeds properly to avoid damage and attain high percentage germination. Winnowing or Blowing Expose the seeds to the wind. Sun or air dry the seeds to save them from fungal and micro-organism infection and insect attack. Other factors to consider: Collect seeds from the local source whenever possible and/or in areas with the same climatic condition as the planting site. thus are useless. Collect the seeds during the tree’s regular fruiting season.
Seed Storage and Handling Seed storage is a technique where seeds are kept under favorable environmental conditions to maintain seed viability. This can be done through the following: Viability test. This is done through visual or laboratory examination of the seeds to identify disease-causing organisms. such as worms and insects. In general. Sorting Sorting separates the defective from the good seeds. depending on the species. (Refer to Annex B for moisture content determination) . Seed Testing Seed testing is done to determine the quality and the capability of seeds to germinate into healthy seedlings. such as fungi. while recalcitrant seeds (short-lived or with less than one year viability) need an MC that is greater than 12%. Determine the moisture content (MC) of the seeds if they need further drying or are ready for storage without losing their viability. Seed health test. as well as animal pest. This is applicable mostly to bigger-sized seeds. This is to keep excess viable seeds for future use when seeds are no longer available for collection. This is done by germinating randomly sampled seeds using appropriate pregermination treatment to determine how many will germinate. Screening or Sieving Sieve the seeds by shaking or rubbing through a screen until all impurities are removed. orthodox seeds (long-lived or with more than a year of viability) require an MC that ranges from 6% to 12%. viruses. bacteria.
Direct sowing or sowing in seedbeds Large seeds (more than 1 cm in diameter) are either sown in seedbeds or directly in plastic bags and other containers. b. just enough to ensure surface cover. Examples of these are Ipil (Intsia bijuga). Cover the seeds with fine sand. such as soaking in sulfuric acid Methods of sowing a. among other species. However. Kaatoan bangkal (Anthosephalus chinensis).early in the morning or late in the afternoon — until the seedlings are ready for potting. some seeds germinate longer. These include any of the following: o breaking of hard seed coats o cold water soak o hot water soak o alternate hot and cold water soak o dry heat treatment o acid and other chemical treatments. Generally. Treatment before germination Seeds with hard coats require some treatments for faster and uniform germination.Some other requirements in storing and handling seeds: For seeds stored under room temperature: spread or place them in cloth sacks. Water the sown seeds using a sprinkler with fine holes close to the soil to avoid dislodging of seeds. Sowing in seedboxes Benguet pine (Pinus kesiya). When transporting. Teak (Tectona grandis). water them very carefully so that the seeds are not eroded. Bagras (Eucalyptus deglupta). germination occurs from 3 days to 2 weeks after sowing. Simply press the seeds into the soil until they are half covered. place seeds in sealed containers or securely wrap them in wax paper. . Lumbang (Aleuhtes moluccana). Narra (Pterocarpus indicus). For seeds stored in cold storage: keep the temperature at about 10DC for orthodox and about 15°C for recalcitrant. depending on species. and other species with very small or fine seeds (less than 1 cm in diameter) are sown only in seedboxes. germination is taking place. Ma-hogany (Swietenia macrophyiia). For very fine seeds. Seed Germination When the seed starts to sprout. Continue watering every day . Agoho (Casuarina equisetifolia). For seeds stored in sealed container: dry the seeds to their desired moisture content to avoid deterioration. The preferred sowing materials or germination soil mix consist of 50% sieved washed river sand and 50% top garden soil. Talisay (Terminalia catappa).
Lift the seedlings with a trowel only 3. Transplanting a. Plant the seedlings in plastic bags or when they are already firm and the soil is other containers. This will provide them with adequate space to grow and develop. . moist. 2. such as damping-off and root rot. In transplanting the seedlings. Seedlings from seedboxes or seedbeds Transfer the seedlings from the seed boxes or seedbeds to plastic bags or other containers.Preparation of potting materials Sterilize the soil before using it as potting material to avoid problems with soil-borne diseases. Transfer the seedlings from the seedboxes or seedbeds when the second pair of leaves has fully developed. This is done using any of the following methods: o o o o heat the soil over a fire for about 15 minutes apply chemical disinfectant (fungicide) pour boiling water spread the soil under direct sunlight in a clean area for one or two days. consider the following: 1.
.The following are the steps on how to gather and transplant wildlings: 1. until they have established themselves. but discard infected ones. Wildlings Wildings are seedlings that grow naturally in the forest. Set aside poorly developed seedlings for treatment to improve their quality. Collect wildlings when the soil is moist to minimize damage of roots. Water the seedlings immediately after 5. These can be used when nursery-grown planting stocks or seeds are lacking or not available. b.4. 6. Keep seedlings shaded for sometime transplanting.
2. Let them develop before planting in the field. around the roots. Gather the wildlings by simply lifting 3. 4. 6. Leave a ball of earth attached firmly them with the aid of a bolo or shovel. Transfer the balled wildings to a shaded portion of the nursery. 5. Wrap the ball of earth with a banana sheath or a plastic bag with holes. .
The basic components of this technique are non-mist propagation chamber. leaving balls of earth attached firmly around their roots. The non-mist propagation chamber is a structure enclosed with large transparent polyethylene bags with a dimension of 62 inches x 25 inches supported by a frame of bent wire. This chamber controls environmental conditions inside the rooting area and keeps it favourable for rooting. roots. Rooting Stem Cuttings Using Non-Mist System This technique is cheaper and a more practical way of propagating planting materials through rooting stem cuttings. and Mango (Mangifera indica).c. natural forests or established hedge gardens. Propagation by cutting is commonly used in most forest tree species such as Narra (Pterocarpus indicus). and tissues as initial material. Santol (Sandoricum koetjape). For dipterocarp species. marcotting and budding are used for most fruit trees such as Pomelo (Citrus grandis). Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla) or Ipil-ipil (Leucaena leucocephala) are lifted with the aid of a bolo or sharpened stick. Grafting. and Bagtikan (Parashorea plicata). such as White Lauan (Shorea contorta). This is done especially in plants that do not fruit regularly (seed-off) or when earlier fruiting is desired. rooting media. This is placed under favorable condition to induce the development of roots and shoots. leaves. Hand-mist sprayer is used to water the cuttings during the rooting period. this method of propagating trees uses plant parts. marcotting. Red Lauan (Shorea negrosensis). collect cuttings from mother trees. such as stems. root or leaf of a donor plant. Hedge garden is an . root containers and hand-mist sprays. select wildlings with more than 7 mm diameter and height of 15-50 cm. Cuttings A cutting may be a portion of a stem. Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla). dipterocarp and bamboo species (Refer to Annex D on how to raise bamboo cuttings). and budding. plastic hiko tray or plastic bags filled with rooting media can be used. There are several effective propagation systems in which the rooting of stem cuttings are successful. Foremost. grafting. Yemane (Gmelina arborea). twigs. seed production areas (SPAs). The rooting media is a mixture of sterilized river sand and coconut coir dust with 1:1 ratio. Some of the common techniques are propagation by cuttings. plantations. For root containers. VEGETATIVE OR ASEXUAL PROPAGATION Instead of seeds. single cells. Wildlings of Narra (Pterocarpus indicus).
4. 2. Treat them immediately with rooting hormones. 6. Place them in a pail with water. follow the direction indicated in the label. The following are the steps in rooting stem cuttings: 1. such as Indole Butyric . To prepare solution. 3. 5. Sterilize them by soaking in fungicide solution from 30 to 60 minutes.orchard of plants that produce cuttings or other tissues for vegetative propagation. Collect young shoots or cuttings for rooting and trim off their leaves into half. Cut them into two-nodal cuttings. Scrape the basal portion of the cutting.
. Gradually open the hardening area. Transfer the potted cuttings in the a week of recovery. Naphthalene Acetic Acid (NAA). Plant each in a plastic pot of mixed garden soil and river sand. Keep them air-tight from 2 to 5 months.Acid(IBA). Place them inside the non-mist propagation chamber. 10. lift the cuttings and dip in water to gently remove the soil from the roots. 9. ready for outplanting. and Indole Acetic Acid (IAA) using the recommended concentration. 11. Return them to the enclosed chamber for 12. After 4 to 8 months. they are chamber during the succeeding 3 weeks. 7. Plant the treated cuttings in hiko tray or plastic bags. This will enable them to adjust to the outside conditions. 8. Once rooted.
The following steps are generally used in grafting: 1.Grafting Connecting two pieces of living tissues together so that they unite and eventually grow and develop as one plant is called grafting. splice. Remove the leaves but retain the buds or nodes in the scion. 3. Sharpen the base of the scion. It is also used to: Hasten reproductive maturity of seedlings Establish clonal seed orchards. 4. Split-cut the top end of the selected stock. clonal tests and clonal banks Obtain benefits of rootstocks. such as cleft. 2. saddle. This propagation method is used when cutting is not applicable. There are several types of grafting. . and whip or tongue. among other methods with respective procedures. Insert the scion between the split-cut of the stock.
Remove the plastic wrapping after 5 10. Remove the plastic bag when young leaves appear but leave the plastic sheet. 8. Cover the grafted portion loosely with a plastic bag. Do not cover the nodes. 6. Tightly wrap the grafted part with a plastic sheet. 9. Marcotting This is a propagation method which includes the development of roots on a stem while it is still attached to the parent plant. Cut the grafted portion and plant the months. graft.5. 7. The procedures for this method are: . Apply wax over the cut portion to prevent loss of water.
2. of too much water.5 to 3 cm in diameter. rooting medium. 6. Cover the exposed portion with moistened a knife. The exposed part must be 15 to 30 cm from the tip of the branch. Remove the plastic and plant the marcot. Cover the rooting medium with plastic. Select a branch that is 0. Cut the marcotted branch below the wrapped Tie both ends with string to prevent seeping portion when the roots are fully developed.1. 5. such as sphagnum moss or coconut husk with small amount of rich. loose soil. . 7. Keep the soil moist. Remove 3 cm of bark around the branch. Clean thoroughly the exposed portion with 4. 3.
2. Procedure: 1. 4. as deep as the bark. 2 to 3 cm long. Insert the shield by pushing it downwards under in the rootstock. the two flaps of bark. This is widely used on citrus. This process is applied or used in small plants. Make a horizontal cut in the rootstock. A scion is a detached living portion of a plant. Open the bark of the T-shaped cut 5. such as a bud. . There are two types of budding: Shield Budding.5 cm under the bud to 2 cm above. Make a vertical cut below the horizontal cut forming a T. Slice a shield of bud from the bud stick about 2. to be attached to a rootstock in the budding or grafting methods. 3. with or without wood.Budding Budding is done when the scion is reduced in size to contain only one bud and a small portion of the bark.
or waxed cloth leaving the bud the cut tightly. . Insert the patch with the bud in the cut on 4. Remove a rectangular piece of bark from the rootstock. This will destroy the growing bud. Tie securely with a plastic tape but leave the bud exposed.6. Don’t press the tape too firmly against the inserted bud. Patch Budding. Wrap the part with the inserted bud with the rootstock. The inserted patch should fit plastic. tape. exposed. 3. This is widely used on fruit trees with thick bark. Procedure: 1.
8. Remove the plastic cover once the grafted buds sprout.5. 6. Water the root stock daily. just above the patched bud. 7. Trim off the upper portion of the rootstock. Cover the stem portion of the grafted bud with a clear plastic bag to reduce transpiration. .
THINNING The growth of the trees should be monitored regularly and thinning started before the stand is suppressed. Initial planting density may be around 1000 seedlings/ha (3 m spacings). Most of these trees are culled or thinned to leave the best 100-200 specimens to grow on into sawlogs. and individual crowns should have clear space all round.SITE PREPARATION AND PLANTING The planting lines should be deep ripped to at least 50 cm to prepare a favourable bed for the planting material and for ease of root penetration. Because Khaya senegalensis has a tendency to form branches low on the stem. This gives better early tree growth (younger trees protect one another and height growth is much better) as well as providing more trees from which to select from. the crop should look distinctly open. This area should be sprayed with herbicide prior to planting and kept weed-free for at least the first two years of growth. Normally. as this encourages weed growth. Proper spacing of trees is very important as it affects the patterns of growth. Earlier fertiliser trials carried out in the Top End with Khaya senegalensis showed applications of nitrogen. one application after planting and the other halfway before the end of the wet. The fertiliser should be placed in pockets on either side of the tree and not spread on the surface of the ground. Planting should occur as soon as the soil is moist enough to allow survival until the regular rains commence. However all trees with poorly developed crowns and stems should be removed. A common spacing for superior seedlings on cleared and prepared sites is 5 metres between rows and 5 metres along the row (400 stems/ha). provided this will not result in large canopy gaps. In a thinned plantation. Pruning Clear wood pruning maintains high wood quality in the target log by controlling branch size and reducing knot defects. This can be done in two applications if necessary. FERTILISER A complete fertiliser with trace elements should be applied at the time of planting at a rate of 200 g/tree. Thus a joint thinning and pruning regime will greatly reduce rotation length while maintaining high quality logs. The removal of double-leaders and tight branches can greatly improve the chances of achieving a final stand of straight stems without knotty centres. trees with the best crowns and stem-form are retained and are left evenly spaced within the stand. phosphorus and trace elements were very important for the successful establishment of this species. Seed from superior trees with a good straight trunk can be spaced further apart than say seed collected from inferior poorly formed trees. weed suppression. even if that means the sacrifice of some of the good formed trees. . Form pruning can also be beneficial with trees that tend to have poor form and heavy branching. form pruning may be necessary on some trees. water requirements and the economics of planting and tending of the plantation.
Depending on the species. The oil is used in West Africa for cooking.a sawlog 50 cm in diameter and 6 m in length will contain about 1 m3 of wood. Hint . The seeds have an oil content of 67% and are rich in oleic acid (66%). linings and mouldings (ICRAF online). It is also used for good quality joinery and ship cabins. darkening with exposure to a deep redbrown with a purple tinge.THE TIMBER The heartwood is pale pink-brown when freshly cut. density is between 680–750 kg/m3. A productive site in the Otways with an ideal management regime may produce trees 50 cm in diameter within 15 years! Bambra Agroforestry Demonstration Farm has already achieved this! More commonly however. as they have the advantages of higher milling recovery rates. In texture and general appearance it more closely resembles Cuban mahogany than any other African species. Schedules have now been developed and kiln drying should be practised in the future. In the past this timber has been used for furniture and bench tops in the Top End. FUNCTIONAL USES The most important uses of mahogany are for furniture and interior decoration. carving inlay work. . both in the solid wood form and as a veneer. The time it will take to grow a 50 cm diameter sawlog will depend on the site quality and the thinning and pruning regime of the stand. The stripe or roe. the aim is to produce sawlogs over a 25-40 year period. they are cheaper to harvest than skinny logs (less logs per cubic metre of timber) and mills generally find larger logs (and the sawn timber from them) easier to handle. no proper drying schedule had been followed or determined. being only slightly more pale and brown. Juvenile wood and sapwood can have lower wood densities as well as being inferior in quality to mature heartwood. Previously. It is moderately hard and heavy. characteristic of timber with interlocking grain. It is the hardest and heaviest of all the mahoganies found in Africa (Alwyn Jay 1972). turnery. The young leaves contain fairly large amounts of digestible protein and are used in Africa as a fodder for cattle and camels. Khaya senegalensis is an important medicinal plant in Africa. and the very bitter bark has a considerable reputation as a fever remedy. aim for larger diameter logs (>45 cm). Aim for large logs For sawlog production. The sapwood is not very distinct from the heartwood. is often very marked. picture frames. the age of the log can effect the quality of the wood. plywood. resulting in excessive shrinkage of the product.
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