Tropical Grasslands (1994) Volume 28, 1723
Dry matter production and transfer dynamics in a humid grassland of Western Ghats in southern India
K.S.T.K. KARUNAICHAMY and K. PALIWAL
Department of Plant Sciences, School of Biological Sciences, Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai, India
Monthly changes in plant biomass, net primary productivity and transfer dynamics of tropical grassland in the Western Ghats region of southern India were measured. The maximum above-ground live shoot biomass was observed in November 1985 (545 g/m2) and maximum below-ground biomass in February 1985 (160 g/m2). Total annual net primary production is estimated to be 1456 g/m2. Of the total input of 3.39 g/m2/d into the system, about 83% was channelled to above-ground and 17% to below-ground. The total disappearance was 0.79 g/m2/d which was 22.3% of the total input. There is a net surplus of organic material as the rate of disappearance is slower than the rate of accumulation of dry matter. Thus, the grassland showed a net accumulation of surplus organic matter, indicating the seral nature of this grassland.