Growth Performance of Cedrela Odorota in Two Stands (Pure and Mixed) of Indigenous Species in the Tano Offin Forest Reserve

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In Ghana, establishing monoculture plantations using fast growing exotic species have been practiced over the years. However, combining these species with native ones in a mixed plantation is a relatively recent development. This study therefore provides vital information on the growth performance or interactive effect of the native species on the exotic species. The study investigated the growth performance of exotic species of Cedrela odorata in a pure and in mixed stand of indigenous species of Terminalia superba and Khaya grandifolia. The study was carried out in an eight year old plantation in the Tano-Offin Forest Reserve which lies in moist semi-deciduous forest zone of Ghana. Survival rate, height, diameter, stand density and volume of the species were determined. Results from the study indicated that pure Cedrela odorata stands had a high survival rate (97.09%) followed by Cedrela odorata mixed with Terminalia superba (95.48%) the least was Cedrela odorata mixed with Khaya grandifolia (95.34%) but no significant differences (p>0.05) were recorded among them. Between the two indigenous species Khaya grandifolia survived better than Terminalia superba, though no significant difference was recorded between them. The results of the study further revealed no significant differences (p>0.05) among growth and productivity of the pure Cedrela odorota stand and the mixed stands of the indigenous species. It was observed from the study that since all the three species used in the plantations are light demanding, the competition for above ground resources was high and the Cedrela odorota sp. being the fast growing species among the three was able to cast a shade over them resulting in their some what poor growth and survival. It can be concluded from the research that the indigenous species did not play any facilitative or competitive reduction roles in the growth performance of the Cedrela odorata species as Cedrela odorata. can perform in both monoculture and mixed stands.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Theoretical and Applied Biology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfillment of the requirements Master of Science degree in Environmental Science, 2016