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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » National Laboratory for Agriculture and The Environment » Soil, Water & Air Resources Research » Research » Research Project #436954

Research Project: Water and Light Use Efficiency of a Silvopasture System

Location: Soil, Water & Air Resources Research

Project Number: 5030-11610-005-80-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2019
End Date: Aug 31, 2021

Objective:
Evaluate the effectiveness of the microclimate modified by agroforestry practices on production efficiency a silvopasture system.

Approach:
The project involves comparison of the water and light use efficiency of forages grown under the shade of widely-spaced trees (silvopasture) and in a conventional pasture in Fayetteville, Arkansas. The research approach utilizes surface energy balance methods to quantify differences in evapotranspiration and microclimate between forage grown beneath rows of five tree species and in the open. Forage height, biomass, and leaf area index will be measured before each grazing event. Forage produced and cumulative water use from the onset of growth or since the last grazing event will be used to calculate water use efficiency.