International Journal of Agricultural Policy and Research
Vol.7 (3), pp. 55-69, April 2019
Available online at https://www.journalissues.org/IJAPR/
Author(s) retain the copyright of this article. Author(s) agree that this article remain permanently open access under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 International License.
Original Research Article
Monitoring the harvesting of the barks of Prunus africana (Hook.f.) Kalkman (Rosaceae) in the agroforest systems of North-West region of Cameroon
Jean Lagarde Betti*1, Bernard Fouadjo1, Eric Wété1, Jules Romain Ngueguim2, Oumar Farick Njimbam1, Stéphanie Tientcheu1 and Daniel Tchiyip Pouepi1
1Department of Plant Biology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Douala, Cameroon, BP 24 157 Douala,Cameroon.
2Institute of Agricultural Research for Development (IRAD), Liaison Agency, Douala – Cameroon.
*Corresponding Author Email : lagardeprunus(at)gmail.com
Tel.: +237 6 77 30 32 72
Prunus africana (Hook.f.) Kalkman is a specie of the Rosaceae family, known under its trade name as pygeum or African cherry. The bark is the major source of an extract used for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. From 2008-2011, Cameroon government with the assistance of the ITTO-CITES Program has managed to regulate the harvesting of Prunus africana in natural forest. The reality is quite different in the field since harvesters have focused on the Prunus found in agroforest systems to satify the demand of the international market. This paper therefore aims to monitor the harvesting of barks of P. africana in agroforest systems found in the North west region of Cameroon. Inventories were conducted in August, 2016, in 17 P. africana plantations located in the following three subdivisions: Fundong in the Boyo division, Kumbo in the Bui division, and Tubah in the Mezam division. The density of P. africana recorded is 5.15 trees/ha. The exploitable stems represent only 7.5%, illustrating that these plantations are still very young. This feature is confirmed by the low value of the average diameter of trees 10.79±5.67 cm and the average thickness of the bark 5.01±1.71 mm. The average diameter annual increment is 0.91±0.46 cm/year, while the average regeneration rate of the bark is 1.91±1.03 mm/year. The diameter annual increment increases, while the regeneration rate of the bark decreases with diameter at least till 40 cm diameter. The harvesting of Prunus bark done in those plantations till now is non-sustainable, since harvesters do not respect advised norms which are the minimum exploitable diameter (MED) of 30 cm and the use of 2/4 and 4/8 techniques of debarking. The combination of the two elements related to the respect of norms (MED and the harvesting technique), reveals that 91% of trees are harvested unsustainably. The analysis done on the regeneration rate tends to show that, the more the young Prunus trees are traumatized, the more they develop capacity of regenerating their bark, at least till ages of 10-12 years and at diameters 30-40 cm. Harvesting activity does not induce the death of trees, but it causes the wilting of some trees. The use of non-sustainable harvesting techniques including the ½ side and the total debarking is the main cause of the wilting of trees.
Key words: Agroforest systems, Prunus africana, CITES, monitoring, harvesting techniques, sustainable, growth rate, regeneration rate, thickness of the bark.