Allometric models for estimating aboveground biomass of shade trees and coffee bushes grown together

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Allometric models for dominant shade tree species and coffee plants (Coffea arabica) were developed for coffee agroforestry systems in Matagalpa, Nicaragua. The studied shade tree species were Cordia alliodora, Juglans olanchana, Inga tonduzzi and I. punctata. The models predict aboveground biomass based on diameter at breast height (for trees), and the stem diameter at a height of 15 cm and plant height (for coffee plants). In addition, the specific gravity of the studied species was determined.The total aboveground biomass of the shade trees varied between 3.5 and 386 kg per tree, and between 0.005 and 2.8 kg per plant for coffee. The aboveground biomass components (foliage, branch, and stem) are closely related with diameter at breast height (r > 0.75). The best-fit models for aboveground biomass of the shade trees were logarithmic, with adjusted R2 between 0.71 and 0.97. In coffee plants, a high correlation was found (r = 0.84) with the stem diameter at 15 cm height, and the best-fit model was logarithmic, as well. The mean specific gravity was 0.52 (+and- 0.11) for trees and 0.82 (+and- 0.06) for coffee plants.

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