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November 2008 Multi story Cropping PRACTICE INTRODUCTION USDA Natural Resources

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November 2008 Multi story Cropping PRACTICE INTRODUCTION USDA Natural Resources Powered By Docstoc
					                                                                                                        November 2008

Multi-story Cropping
PRACTICE INTRODUCTION
          USDA, Natural Resources Conservation Service―Practice Code 379




MULTI-STORY CROPPING                                            Multi-story cropping can provide a way to
Multi-story cropping means that existing or                     cultivate high-value specialty crops under the
planted stands of trees or shrubs are managed as an             protection of a forest canopy. Meanwhile, timber
overstory with an understory of woody and/or                    stand improvement can result in a higher value
nonwoody plants that are grown for a variety of                 timber crop as a long-term economic strategy.
products.
                                                                COMMON ASSOCIATED PRACTICES
PRACTICE INFORMATION                                            Multi-story cropping is commonly applied as part
The purpose of multi-story cropping is to:                      of a Conservation Management System with
                                                                practices such as:
     •    Improve crop diversity by growing mixed
          but compatible crops having different                      •    Forest Stand Improvement (666)
          heights on the same area                                   •    Tree/Shrub Establishment (612)
     •    Improve soil quality by increasing                         •    Tree/Shrub Pruning (660)
          utilization and cycling of nutrients and                   •    Tree/Shrub Site Preparation (490)
          maintaining or increasing soil organic
          matter                                                     •    Access Control (472)
     •    Increase net carbon storage in plant                  For further information, refer to the practice
          biomass and soil                                      standard in the local Field Office Technical Guide
                                                                and associated practice specifications and job
This practice applies on all lands where trees,                 sheets.
shrubs, and woody or nonwoody crops can be
grown in combination. This practice does not
apply on land that is grazed.

The following page identifies the effects expected to occur when this practice is applied. These effects are subjective
and somewhat dependent on variables such as climate, terrain, soil, etc. All appropriate local, State, Tribal, and Federal
permits and approvals are the responsibility of the landowner and are presumed to have been obtained. Users are
cautioned that these effects are estimates that may or may not apply to a specific site.
                                                                                                                                                                                          November 2008

 Multi-Story Cropping (379)                                                                                            Initial setting: Cropland or unmanaged forest with potential for
                                                                                                                       growing trees or shrubs that may or may not be dissected by
                                       7/2008               Multi-Story Cropping (379)                                 streams. Field concerns are water and wind erosion and lack of
                                                                                                                                                                                                     Start
                                                                                                                       diverse tree and understory products and habitat

                                                                                                                                                               Notes: Effects are qualified with a plus (+)
                                                                                                                                                                or minus (-). These symbols indicate only
          1. Wood fiber in                D.2 (+)                2. Woody plant root systems,                                 3. Canopy cover and                an increase (+) or a decrease (-) in the
         established plants               Carbon                      litter, and soil OM                D.6 (+)               vertical vegetative               effect of the resource, not whether the
                                          storage                                                        Shade*                  structure from                       effect is beneficial or adverse.
                                                                                                                               established plants              * When traditional cropland is converted to
                                                                                                                                                                            multi-story cropping
   D.1 (+) Initial wood                         D.3 (+) Infiltration of            D.5 (-) Sheet,
    fiber growth rate                           precipitation and soil            rill, streambank
                                                      storage*                       erosion and                             D.8 (+) Aesthetics                     D.10 (-) Micro-
                                                                                  sedimentation*                                                                   climate extremes*
   I.1 (-) Later wood
    fiber growth rate                                   D.4 (+) Uptake of                                         D.7 (+)                 D.9 (-) Wind
                                                        soil nutrients and              I.3 (-) Stream           Arboreal,                 velocity*                                 D.11 (-)
                                                        trapping of water-                   water              understory                                                          Traditional
                                                          borne sediment                 temperature          habitat; detritus                                                   cropland area*
   O&M - periodic tree                                                                                           and large                                 I.8 (+) Tree
  and understory product                                                                                      woody debris*                              and understory
      removal while                              I.2 (+)                                                                                                    production
   maintaining erosion                      Denitrification of                                                                                                                         I.9 (-)
         control                              soil nitrates                                                                         I.6 (-)                                       Traditional crop
                                                                                                                                   Pesticide                                        production
                                                                                                                                     drift

    4. Harvested wood               C.1 (-)                  C.2 (+) Quality of             I.4 (+) Stream fauna,
   fiber (manufactured           Atmospheric                 receiving waters              e.g., fish, invertebrates         I.5 (+)           I.7 (-) Wind-                        LEGEND
   wood products) and             CO2 and                                                                                    Forest                borne
  other tree/understory-         greenhouse                                                                                  wildlife            sediment
     related products               effect                                                                                                           and                      Associated practice or
                                                                                                                                                 sediment-                           activity
                                                                                                                                                  attached
                                C.7 (+) Tree and                                                                                                 pollutants
                               understory product                                                                                                                           #. Created by practice
         D.12 (+)             business and support
        Diversified               infrastructure                                                                                                                            D. Direct effect
        landowner
          income;
                                                                                            C.4 (+) Environmental                                                           I. Indirect effect
        contractor                      C.3 (+) Aquatic health for humans,
                                                                                                    quality                             C.5 (+) Air quality
           income                           domestic and wild animals
                                                                                                                                                                            C. Cumulative effect


                                                                                                                                                                                       pathway
                                                                                      C.6 (+) Recreation business and
         C.8 (+) Income and income                                                                                                                    I.10 (+/-)
                                                                                            support infrastructure
          stability (individuals and                                                                                                                  Potential             (+) increase; (-) decrease
                  community)                                                                                                                           income

The diagram above identifies the effects expected to occur when this practice is applied according to NRCS practice standards and specifications. These effects are
subjective and somewhat dependent on variables such as climate, terrain, soil, etc. All appropriate local, State, Tribal, and Federal permits and approvals are the
responsibility of the landowners and are presumed to have been obtained. All income changes are partially dependent upon market fluctuations which are independent of
the conservation practices. Users are cautioned that these effects are estimates that may or may not apply to a specific site.

				
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