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Journal Article

Soil fertility and nutrient status of traditional Gayo coffee agroforestry systems in the Takengon region, Aceh Province, Indonesia

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Hanisch, S., Dara, Z., Brinkmann, K., & Buerkert, A. (2011). Soil fertility and nutrient status of traditional Gayo coffee agroforestry systems in the Takengon region, Aceh Province, Indonesia. Journal of Agriculture and Rural Development in the Tropics and Subtropics, 112(2), 87-100.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0006-5172-E
Little is known about the traditional coffee cultivation systems in Central Aceh, Indonesia, where coffee production isa major source of income for local Gayo people. Based onfield observations and farmer interviews, 14 representativeagroforestry coffee plantations of different age classes (60–70 years, 30–40 years, and 20 years) as well as sevenadjacent grassland and native forest sites were selected for this study, and soil and coffee leaf samples collectedfor nutrient analysis. Significant differences in soil and coffee leaf parameters were found between former nativeforest and Sumatran pine (Pinus merkusii) forest as previous land cover indicating the importance of the land usehistory for today’s coffee cultivation. Soil pH as well as exchangeable Na and Ca concentrations were significantlylower on coffee plantations compared to grassland and forest sites. Soil C, N, plant available P, exchangeable K, andMg concentrations showed no consistent differences between land use groups. Nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), andpotassium (K) concentrations of coffee leaves were in the sufficiency range, whereas zinc (Zn) contents were foundto be consistently below the sufficiency threshold and significantly lower in coffee plantations of previous pine forestcover compared to those of previous native forest cover. While the results of this study provided insights into thenutrient status of coffee plantations in Central Aceh, the heterogeneity of site conditions, limited sampling size, andscarcity of reliable data about the land use history and initial soil conditions of sampled sites preclude more definitiveconclusions about the sustainability of the studied systems.