What is Neem ? Azadirachta indica • A tree in the mahogany family Meliaceae. • One of two species in the genus Azadirachta. • Native to India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh growing in tropical and semi-tropical regions.
Leaves….• Opposite.• Pinnate leaves 20–40 cm long.• 20 to 31 medium to dark green leaflets.• About 3–8 cm long.• The terminal leaflet is often missing.• The petioles are short.
Flowers….• The (white and fragrant) flowers are arranged axillary• The inflorescences, which branch up to the third degree, bear from 150 to 250 flowers.• An individual flower is 5–6 mm long and 8– 11 mm wide.• Bisexual flowers
Fruit…..• The fruit is a the staminal drupe• 12-18 mm long• ovoid-oblong• yellowish-green smooth
Uses of Neem • Timber • Fresh leaves • Dried leaves • Flowers • Fruits • Bark
What is Tree Improvement ? • An additional tool of Silviculture which deals with the kind and genetic makeup of trees used in forest operations.
ObjectivesProduction of desired quality timber in maximum amounts in the shortest period of time at a reasonable cost
Site selection Factor Circumstances Frost sensitive, especially seedlings. Temperature Shade temperature - 30-35ºC in Sri Lanka; 400-1200 mm/yr. Rainfall 130 mm/yr to survive, but 450 mm/yr to grow well. 0-800 Mean annual sea level.; occasionally to Altitude 1000 m. Soil Type Well drained, deep sandy soils. Soil pH 6.2-7.0, but 5.9-10.0 tolerated Needs sunlight for productivity. Light Seedlings need some protection from sun.
Production line seed for operational planting Wild stands and plantations Pick the very best 30-40 trees. First generation seed orchard Progeny test Roughed first generation seed orchard Intensive selection Improved first generation seed orchard Progeny test Second generation seed orchard
IMPROVEMENT OF SEED SOURCES.• The results from selection, testing and evaluation will enable improved sources to be identified and established.• These will be the "machines" of the improvement program, by which improved seeds or cuttings can be produced for routine use.
PRODUCTION OF IMPROVED SEEDS ANDCUTTINGSPossible gains.• actual mass production of seeds or cuttings, in sufficient quantities