Reverse phenology and dry-season water uptake by Faidherbia albida (Del.) A. Chev. in an agroforestry parkland of Sudanese West Africa

Roupsard Olivier, Ferhi A., Granier André, Pallo F., Depommier Denis, Mallet Bernard, Joly Hélène, Dreyer Erwin. 1999. Reverse phenology and dry-season water uptake by Faidherbia albida (Del.) A. Chev. in an agroforestry parkland of Sudanese West Africa. Functional Ecology, 13 : pp. 460-472.

Journal article ; Article de revue à facteur d'impact
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Abstract : #Faidherbia albida# (Acacia) is a multipurpose tree widely distributed in semiarid Africa, notably in agroforestry parklands. It is in leaf during the dry season and defoliated during the rainy season, displaying therefore a peculiar reverse phenology. The related water-use strategy, including leaf water potential, sapflow, hydraulic conductance and depth of uptake, were monitored on adult trees in a Sudanese west-African parkland. Despite a severe drought in the superficial soil layers, the predawn leaf water potential of #F. albida# dropped only to #ca.# - 0.5 MPa during the end of the dry season, indicating only a moderate water stress. Radial trunk growth ceased before the end of the dry season and could have been affected by the moderate drought stress. However, leafiness remained constant during the dry season. Leaf shedding occurred after the first rains and was probably independent of drought. #F. albida# displayed large transpiration rates under favourable conditions but the ratio of sapflow to Penman evapotranspiration and the soil-to-leaf specific hydraulic conductance decreased severely towards the end of the dry season. Roots of #F. albida# were distributed through the weathered rock, down to a depth of 7 m, and vanished in the vicinity of a permanent water-table. Phreatophytism thus explained the maintenance of growth and transpiration during the dry season. Nevertheless, during early rains, delta18 O of sap switched towards the composition of the superficial soil layers, indicating facultative phreatophytism. Reverse phenology, low density and depth of water uptake of #F. albida# indicated a low competition with annual crops for water; the fraction of annual rainfall used by the trees was estimated to remain below 5%

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Zone semi-aride, Agroforesterie, Phénologie, Sécheresse, Feuille, Système racinaire, Eau du sol, Relation plante eau, Compétition végétale, Culture en mélange

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Afrique, Soudan

Classification Agris : F60 - Plant physiology and biochemistry
F08 - Cropping patterns and systems

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Roupsard Olivier, CIRAD-CP-COCOTIER (VUT)
  • Ferhi A.
  • Granier André
  • Pallo F.
  • Depommier Denis, CIRAD-FORET-DIR (IND)
  • Joly Hélène, CIRAD-FORET-DIR (FRA)
  • Dreyer Erwin

Autres liens de la publication

  • Document en bibliothèque
  • Localisation du document : BA_BR902 [(Bibliothèque de Baillarguet)] ; BA_BR950 [(Bibliothèque de Baillarguet)]

Source : Cirad - Agritrop (

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