conservation-uses

Conservation uses

Prosopis Cineraria has a very deep taproot system and hence it does not generally compete with the associated crops. The improved physical soil conditions compared with higher availability of nutrients under the Khejri canopy explain the better growth of the crops associated with it.

Rural communities encourage the growth of Prosopis cineraria in their agricultural fields, pastures and village community lands.

Because of its extensive root system, it stabilizes shifting sand dunes and is also useful as a windbreak and in forestation of dry areas. It fixes atmospheric nitrogen through microbial activities and adds organic matter through leaf litter decomposition, rejuvenating poor soils. Because it is the only tree species in arid regions, it provides much needed shade and shelter to the farmers working in the fields as well as to the cattle and wildlife during the summer months.

Cattle, sheep, horses, mules, donkeys, goats, camels and other desert wildlife eat pods of Prosopis Cineraria. In western Rajasthan, Blackbuck (Antilopecervicapra) and Chinkara (Gazellabennettii) have survived by eating the pods and leaves of this tree.

Because of its economic value, the tree is left standing in arable land and the farmers regulate its population by adapting suitable agro forestry management practices.