Measuring Leaf Area Index in Asian Rubber Plantations – A Challenge
Marc Cotter1, Arisoa Rajaona2, Sabine Stürz1, Alexandra Schappert1, Folkard Asch1
1University of Hohenheim, Inst. of Agricultural Sciences in the Tropics (Hans-Ruthenberg-Institute), Germany
In order to estimate water use and water requirements of tropical plantations systems such as rubber it is adamant to have accurate information on leaf area development of the plantation as the main determinant of evapotranspiration. Literature commonly suggests a number of different methods on how to obtain leaf area index (LAI) information from rubber plantations. Methods include destructive measurements of leaf area at peak LAI, indirect methods such as gap fraction methods (i.e. Hemiview and LAI 2000) and radiation interception methods (i.e. SunScan) or litter fall traps. Published values for peak LAI in rubber plantation differ widely and show no clear trend to be explanained by management practices or the influence of local climate patterns.
Keywords: Leaf area index, methods, rubber
Contact Address: Marc Cotter, University of Hohenheim, Inst. of Agricultural Sciences in the Tropics (Hans-Ruthenberg-Institute), Garbenstr. 13, 70599 Stuttgart, Germany, e-mail: Cotteruni-hohenheim.de