Management of Kikar/Babul (Acacia nilotica) – Species Management

MANAGEMENT OF ACACIA NILOTICA
  • Common Name:         Kikar, Babul
o   DESCRIPTION
·       The crown form varies from conical to spreading.
·       The flowers are yellow, fragrant.
·       The pods are variable 4 to 22 cm long.
·       It is an important constituent of deciduous Tropical forests and tropical thorn forests.
·       At an elevation Range of 200 – 500 meters.
·       Pods ripen April to June.
o   DISTRIBUTION
·       The tree is native to Pakistan and found in Sindh, Punjab, Balochistan, and KPK.
o   SILVICULTURAL CHARACTERISTICS
·       An intolerant, drought resistant tree.
·       With minor problems with seed insects.
·       It is usually reproduced from seed pretreatment of seed with boiling water.
·       It is relatively fast-growing species.
·       It will yield 4 to 15 m3/ha/year in 20 years.
·       It has a great potential as a Farm Forestry.
·       It is useful for controlling erosion in gullied areas and also can be grown on saline, sodic sites for soil reclamation and biomass production.
·       Seed weight: 7000 to 11,000 seeds/kg.
·       It reproduces naturally mainly through seed by direct sowing by broadcasting (seed rate 2.5 – 3 kg per hectare); dabbling in lines, patches or mounds in June.
·       It is light demander, drought resistant, forest tender.
·       It’s coppicing power is very variable.
·       Leaves and pods are widely used as fodder.
·       Best popular general utility timber for construction of carts, Persian wheels, Agricultural tools and implements, door, windows, mine props, fencing material etc.
·       Babul bark is one of the best tanning materials.
·       Babul gum is the earliest commercial source of gum Arabic; it is used in inks, paints, matches, and confectionery.
o   SILVICULTURAL SYSTEM
·       Babul plantation is management by clear felling system, followed by Artificial propagation.

·       Rotation for fuelwood and small timber is usually 20 – 25 years; for Bark Tannin 15 20 years.
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