C3.4 Development of an agroforestry site classification model [funded by Ma 1257/12-1]

PI(s) for this project:


Development of an agroforestry site classification model


The specific knowledge about the site resources and the degradation status of soils is a key prerequisite for the planning and the design of a sustainable landuse in the subtropics and tropics. However, site classification systems available do not consider the site potentials and the degradation status of the soils sufficiently. The objective of the research project is to develop an agroforestry site classification model for the rain forest region of Southern Ecuador in natural forests and deforested areas under pasture and succession. Using the results of a systematic site mapping in the pilot region of the valley San Francisco representative site types and site groups will be defined and assessed based on key profiles and major soil groups (WRB) and complemented by specific adapted criteria of the GLASOD-classification (UNEP). Additionally the potential for improvement of pasture productivity and soil fertility will be determined in a fertilization experiment in order to determine the sustainable carrying capacity of the pastures; this research will be carried out in cooperation with the Ecuadorian partner university Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja UTPL. Dominant region-specific site and agroforestry landuse-units will be defined and a GIS-supported site classification model developed.