Open Access Original Research Article

Physicochemical Properties of Soil under Different Forest Types in the Western Ramganga Valley (Uttarakhand Himalaya, India)

Dinesh Singh Rawat, Deep Shekhar Das, Prabhawati Tiwari, Preeti Naithani, Jay Krishan Tiwari

Asian Plant Research Journal, Page 1-14
DOI: 10.9734/aprj/2021/v8i430180

The physicochemical properties of soils of six forests varying in elevation (lower, middle, and upper), slope, aspects, and floristic composition viz. L1 (Oak mixed), L2 (Chir pine), M1 (Rhododendron mixed), M2 (Rhododendron mixed), U1 (Abies mixed) and U2 (Abies mixed) from Western Ramganga Valley (Chamoli, Uttarakhand Himalaya, India) were scrutinized. The composite soil samples from three depths (0–10 cm, 11–20 cm, and 21–30 cm) were collected during the different seasons and the physicochemical parameters were analyzed using standard manual and protocol. Texture, bulk density, moisture content, water holding capacity, organic matter, organic carbon, pH, nitrogen content, available phosphorus, exchangeable potassium and C:N ratio of soil samples from each forest site were analyzed and discussed. It was observed that the physical properties of soils either do not vary across the three depths (0–10 cm, 11–20 cm, and 21–30 cm) or show slight changes whereas chemical properties show notable variations comparatively. The significant variation (ANOVA, P < 0.05) was observed in the soil texture (sand, silt, and clay contents), moisture content, water holding capacity, and nitrogen content across the six forest types (study sites). The soil texture ranged between loam and sandy loam which is considered supportive for plant growth. Besides, the lower bulk density and higher soil organic carbon and organic matter with other determined parameters in the studied soils indicate that the studied six forests have sustained nutritive soils. It can be concluded from the present results that the soil physicochemical properties vary with changes in the vegetation composition (forest types) at different elevations in Western Himalaya. Further elaborative study will be done to ascertain interrelationship among the vegetation and soils.

Open Access Original Research Article

Hypolipidemic Potentials of Methanolic Extract of Rauvolfia vomitoria Leaves in Rats Fed with High Cholesterol

Abiodun Olusoji Owoade, Adewale Adetutu, Olufemi Ogundeji Ogundipe, Akinade William Owoade

Asian Plant Research Journal, Page 15-25
DOI: 10.9734/aprj/2021/v8i430181

The study was aimed to investigate the hypolipidemic potential of methanolic extract Rauvolfia vomitoria leaves in high cholesterol-fed rats. The preliminary study showed that R. vomitoria leaves were able to scavenge the 2,2-azino-bis (3-ethylbenzthiazoline-6-sufonic acid) (ABTS) and 2-Diphenyl-1- picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radicals and these radicals scavenging abilities were found to be dose-dependent. Administration of cholesterol to rats for 45 days induced a significant increase in the activities of alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and increase lipids levels in the plasma and tissues while HDL cholesterol was decreased. It also elevated the levels of malondialdehyde (MDA) and decreased superoxide dismutase (SOD) activities in the tissues. However, co-administration of high cholesterol-fed rats with R. vomitoria extract at doses of 100 and 200 mg/kg significantly reversed lipids levels to near normal with cholesterol in the plasma, liver, heart, kidney and lung reduced by (23.13% and 56.43%), (30.09% and 20.90%), (38.21% and 74.53%), (12.61% and 32.49%) and (37.11% and 29.90%) respectively while HDL cholesterol level was increased by (225.44% and 110.39%). The levels of AST, ALT and ALP in the plasma and MDA in the tissues were also decreased while SOD activities in the liver, heart, kidney and lung were elevated by (89.35% and 149.21%), (74.91% and 68.35%), (56.76% and 114.77%), and (204.91% and 274.62%) respectively. The extract of R. vomitoria was found to be rich in phenolic content and was proved to have no toxic effects on rats when administered alone to normal rats at a dose level of 200mg/kg/day. The results obtained in this study demonstrated the antioxidant and lipid-lowering effects of R. vomitoria and, suggests that the plant could serve as a new potential natural product for the treatment of hyperlipidemia.

Open Access Original Research Article

Perceived Profitability of Agroforestry in Rural Multan of Pakistan

Muhammad Zubair, Syed Muhammad Atif Tasleem, Syed Bilal Hussain

Asian Plant Research Journal, Page 26-32
DOI: 10.9734/aprj/2021/v8i430182

Agroforestry remained a profitable venture across the globe if managed well spatially and temporarily. Farmlands are viable option to practice agroforestry in Pakistan for sustaining farmers’ livelihoods as well as to provide products and services for ever increasing population. This study focusses on how agroforestry is being perceived as profitable enterprise by the farmers in Multan, Punjab Pakistan. Rural areas of Multan were selected for this study and 200 farmers were selected randomly from 10 villages across 02 union councils using multi-stage sampling procedure. The results revealed that agroforestry remained the prime land use system as reported by the farmers (99%) belonging to agropastoral and agroforestry practice. Moreover, agroforestry perceived as high-income system providing variety of product (increased crop and fodder production, variety of products and income) and services (Carbon sequestration, climate amelioration, soil conservation). The study concluded the need for public-private partnership for the promotion of agroforestry in the region.

Open Access Original Research Article

Habitat Assessment and Regeneration Pattern of Himalayan Birch (Betula utilis) in Royal Botanical Park, Lampelri

Bhagat Suberi, Kinzang Wangchuk, Karma Sherub

Asian Plant Research Journal, Page 33-43
DOI: 10.9734/aprj/2021/v8i430183

The Himalayan Birch (Betula utilis D. Don) an essential tree species due to its ecological and social importance in the himalayan region.  The study assessed  the effect of environmental factors on habitat, growth, and regeneration patterns of the Himalayan Birch at the Royal Botanical Park, Lampelri, Bhutan . Two vertical transects with a spacing of 75 m were laid across the altitudinal gradient. A total of 10 circular sample plots were laid on each transect with a plot size of 12.62 m for trees, 3.57 m for regeneration, and 0.57 m for ground cover vegetation. A total of 119 vascular plant species under 45 families were recorded in 20 survey plots. The Spearman rho’s correlation showed strong negative correlation between the species abundance and temperature (rs=- .83) and positive correlation with the species count and altitude (rs = .83). The species richness in the study area showed an initial increase up to certain with elevation and then  decreased with further increase in elevation. The importance value index (IVI) of tree species showed Tsuga dumosa as the most dominant species.  Betula utilis indicated an increasing density with an increase in elevation. The regeneration of Betula utilis was poor as it was mostly found in a sapling stage. From a total of 43 tree species regenerating,  13.95% showed good regeneration, 34.88% fair, 23.25% poor, and 4.65% without regeneration. The remaining 23.25% seems  to be either reappearing or immigrating.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effect of Different Types of Pruning Operations on Yield and Quality of Tea

Md. Imran Hossen, Toufiq Ahmed, Riyadh Arefin

Asian Plant Research Journal, Page 44-51
DOI: 10.9734/aprj/2021/v8i430184

Aims: Pruning is the cutting of branches of a tea bush at predetermined height and at a specified interval in order to reinvigorate and bring tea bushes within reach of the pluckers, which directly related to the productivity and quality of tea. In Bangladesh, Three and four year pruning cycles were the conventional recommendations for the tea plantation. In this experiment, along with BTRI recommended four types of pruning operations (LP, DSK, MSK and LSK), two more types of  pruning operations such as: UP (Unprune) and LoS (Level of Skiff) were considered as treatments. This experiment was conducted with two main objectives: to evaluate the yield and yield related parameters of tea due to different types of pruning operations as well as to find out the effect of pruning operations on organoleptic quality of black tea.

Study Design, Place and Duration of Study: This experiment was conducted ‘D2 Thall’ area at the main research farm of Bangladesh Tea Research Institute (BTRI) from December 2017 to November 2019. The experimental design was Randomized Completely Block Design (RCBD) with six treatments and three replications.

Methodology:

The treatments are denoted as T1 (UP: Unpruned) control, T2 (LP: Light Pruning), T3 (DSK: Deep Skiffing), T4 (MSK: Medium Skiffing), T5 (LSK: Light Skiffing) and T6 (LoS: Level of Skiffing) respectively. Data were collected under the following parameters:

  1. Number of plucking point or pluckable shoot/bush in each plucking
  2. Fresh weight (g) of 100 shoots (three leaves and a bud)
  3. Oven Dry weight (g) of 100 shoots (three leaves and a bud) to calculate Dry Matter Content
  4. Green leaf weight (kg) to calculate Yield of each treatment
  5. Number of plucking round to calculate Yield gap of each treatment
  6. Black Tea Quality of each treatment by Organoleptic Tasting Method.

Results: It was found that, number of plucking points/pluckable shoot and yield were found significantly high in T6 (Level of Skiffing), T5 (Light Skiffing) and T1 (Unpruned) than the other treatments. But in terms of tea quality, lowest quality tea was found in T1 (Unpruned), T6 (Level of Skiffing) and T5 (Light Skiffing) treatment. So, it can be concluded that, ‘Skiff Pruning’ or ‘Unprune’ technique had positive effect on yield but the quality of these technique were poor in comparison with other treatments. T2 (Light Pruning) treatment gave more tender and fresh shoot than the other treatment. For this reason, dry matter was low in T2 (Light Pruning) treatment but tea quality was much better than the other pruning technique.

Conclusion: Pruning has  positive or  negative effect on  yield and quality of  tea.  ‘Skiff Pruning’ or

‘Unprune’ has positive effect on yield but the quality of is poor than the other treatments. Best Quality tea can be produced from Light Pruning tea section because of having more tender and fresh shoot than other treatments.