Research Note

Effects of previous cultivation on regeneration of Julbernadia globiflora and Brachystegia spiciformis in grazing areas of Mupfurudzi Resettlement Scheme, Zimbabwe

  • T Chinuwo
  • E Gandiwa
  • PH Mugabe
  • IDT Mpofu
  • E Timpong-Jones

Abstract

We investigated the effects of previous cultivation on regeneration potential under miombo woodlands in a resettlement area, a spatial product of Zimbabwe’s land reforms. We predicted that cultivation would affect population structure, regeneration, recruitment and potential grazing capacity of rangelands. Plant attributes for Julbernadia globiflora and Brachystegia spiciformis were measured in previously cultivated and uncultivated sites making up rangelands of the scheme. Their population structure showed a high regeneration potential with different recruitment mechanisms, either coppicing or seedling emergence. Brachystegia spiciformis populations had more adult trees, and its saplings were more abundant in uncultivated sites while regeneration on cultivated sites was mainly from coppices. Julbernadia globiflora had fewer adult trees but high seedling and sapling densities, especially on cultivated sites, while coppicing was low and more common on uncultivated sites. This suggests that cultivation would favour vigorous recruitment of J. globiflora, while B. spiciformis would become more abundant in the absence of cultivation. This varying recruitment of the two woody species is likely to modify and influence state-and-transition dynamics in a miombo woodland, thus affecting the resultant tree population structure and grass biomass yield and quality.

Keywords: miombo codominants; population structure; reverted rangelands

African Journal of Range & Forage Science 2010, 27(1): 45–49

Author Biographies

T Chinuwo
Faculty of Agriculture, Science and Technology, North-West University, Mafikeng Campus, Private Bag X2046, Mmabatho 2735, South Africa; Department of Agriculture, Faculty of Science and Agriculture, University of Zululand, Private Bag X1001, KwaDlangezwa 3886, South Africa
E Gandiwa
Scientific Services, Gonarezhou National Park, Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, Private Bag 7003, Chiredzi, Zimbabwe; Tropical Resource Ecology Programme, University of Zimbabwe, PO Box MP 167, Mt Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe
PH Mugabe
Institute of Environmental Studies, University of Zimbabwe, PO Box MP 167, Mt Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe
IDT Mpofu
Animal Science Department, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Namibia, Private Bag 13301, Windhoek, Namibia
E Timpong-Jones
College of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Centre, University of Ghana–Legon, PO Box LG 38, Legon, Ghana
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Articles

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eISSN: 1727-9380
print ISSN: 1022-0119