Agroforestry Biomass Projects at the Guelph Research Station
A long-term agroforestry research project led by University of Guelph researchers at the Guelph Research Station is being completed this winter. The project relates to biomass—non-food plants such as trees with the potential to be used for fuel. As part of that project, “short duration woody crops” such as poplar and willow trees and grass varieties were planted. To complete the project, they must now be harvested.
Harvest will take place starting Nov. 23, 2020 at two sites that front onto the east side of Victoria Rd. S. in Guelph between College Avenue and Stone Road. The University of Guelph is working with the forestry consultants and qualified contractors to ensure the work is completed safely and with respect for the soil and vegetation.
As an institutional project, the research plots and planted biomass trees are exempt from the City of Guelph’s tree protection by-law. Under the provisions of the by-law, a Tree Management Plan was submitted and approved by an inspector.
Work on this biomass project will further our understanding of growing biomass crops and enhance knowledge about carbon sequestration and alternative fuels. A list of publications stemming from this research is available in the Question and Answer section below.
There will be machinery and activity at the Guelph Research Station starting on Nov. 23, 2020 as trees and grasses in the research plot areas are harvested.
University of Guelph staff in the Office of Research have been working with the City of Guelph to ensure the tree removal complies with local by-laws. As an institutional use, the research plots are exempt from the City’s tree protection by-laws. A Tree Management Plan was provided and approved.
If you have questions about the research station, please contact:
Director, Research Facilities Management
Phone: 519-824-4120, Ext. 56639
To learn about results from this project:
Please contact Prof. Naresh Thevathasan and see the list of publications from this project, below.
Below is a list of publications associated with the research project:
Ayerb, N.W., Goretty M. Diasa, G.M, Kariyapperumaa,K., Thevathasan, N., Gordon, A., Sidders, D. (2017). Life Cycle Assessment of Heat Production from Short-Rotation Willow in Southern Ontario, Canada. Applied Energy: 342-353
Bazrgar AB, A Ng, B Coleman, MW Ashiq, A Gordon and N Thevathasan (corresponding author). 2020. Long-Term Monitoring of Soil Carbon Sequestration in Woody and Herbaceous Bioenergy Crop Production Systems on Marginal Lands in Southern Ontario, Canada. Sustainability, 12, 3901. 16 pp.
Borden K, Marney E Isaac, Naresh V Thevathasan, Andrew M Gordon, and Sean C Thomas (2014). Estimating coarse root biomass with ground penetrating radar in a tree-based intercropping system. Agroforestry Systems: DOI 10.1007/s10457-014-9722-5.
Cardinael, R, N. Thevathasan (corresponding author), A. Gordon, R. Clinch, I. Mohammed and D. Sidders (2012). Growing woody biomass for bioenergy in a tree-based intercropping system in southern Ontario, Canada. Agroforestry Systems 86: 279-286
Clinch, R.L., N. V. Thevathasan, A.M. Gordon, T.A. Volk and D. Sidders (2009). Biophysical interactions in a short rotation willow intercropping system in southern Ontario, Canada. Agriculture, Ecosystem and Environment.131:61-69Coleman B, K Bruce, Q Chang, L Frey, Siyu Guo, MS Tarannum, A Bazrgar, D Siddrs, T Keddy A Gordon and N Thevasathan (corresponding author). 2018. Quantifying C stocks in high-yield, short-rotation woody crop productions systems for forest and bioenergy values and CO2 emission reduction. The Forestry Chronicle Vol 94, N0 3, p 260-268.
Graham J, P. Voroney, Brent Coleman, B. Deen, A. Gordon,. M. Thimmanagari and N. Thevathasan (corresponding author) (2018). Quantifying soil organic carbon stocks in herbaceous biomass crops grown in Ontario, Canada. Agroforest Syst: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10457-018-0272-0
Lutes K, M. Oelbermann, Naresh V. Thevathasan and A.M. Gordon (2016). Effect of nitrogen fertilizer on greenhouse gas emissions in two willow clones (Salix miyabeana and S. dasyclados) in southern Ontario, Canada. Agroforestry Systems. DOI 10.1007/s10457-016-9897-z.
Mafa-Attoye, T.G., N. Thevathasan and K.E. Dunfield (2019). Indications of shifting microbial communities associated with growing biomass crops on marginal lands in Southern Ontario. Agroforestry Systems. DOI: 10.1007/s10457-019-00445-w
Marsal F., Naresh V. Thevathasan (corresponding author), S. Guillot, A. M. Gordon, M. Thimmanagari, W. Deen, S. Silim, R. Soolanayakanahally and D Sidders (2016). Biomass yield assessment of five potential energy crops grown in southern Ontario, Canada. Agroforestry Systems. DOI 10.1007/s10457-016-9893-3
Muhammad Waseem Ashiq, Amir Behzad Bazrgar, Houman Fei, Brent Coleman, Kevin Vessey, Andrew Gordon, Derek Sidders, Tim Keddy and Naresh Thevathasan (corresponding author) (2018). A nutrient-based sustainability assessment of purpose-grown poplar and switchgrass biomass production systems established on marginal lands in Canada. Can. J. Plant Sci. 98: 1–12.
Sean Simpson, Dunfield K.E., Khosla1 K., Lyons E. M., Thimmanagari M., Coleman1 B., Thevathasan N.V. (2020). The influence of biofertilizer effect on switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) crop yield under greenhouse and field conditions in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. American Journal of Agricultural Research 5:100.
Thevathasan N (corresponding author), Andrew Gordon, Jamie Simpson, Xiaobang Peng, Salim Silim, Raju Soolanayakanahally and Henry de Gooijer. (2014). Sustainability Indicators of Biomass Production in Agroforestry Systems. The Open Agriculture Journal 8: 1-11.
Wotherspoon, A., Naresh V. Thevathasan, Andrew M. Gordon and R. Paul Voroney (2014). Carbon sequestration potential of five tree species in a 25-year-old temperate tree-based intercropping system in southern Ontario, Canada. Agroforestry Systems: DOI 10.1007/s10457-014-9719-0
Zainab AL-Kaabi, Ranjan Pradhan, Naresh Thevathasan, Andrew Gordon, Yi Wai Chiangand and Animesh Dutta (2019). Bio-carbon production by oxidation and hydrothermal carbonization of paper recycling black liquor. Journal of Cleaner Production 213:332-341.
Thevathasan N. (2019). Quantification and long-term monitoring of soil carbon sequestration in woody and herbaceous bioenergy crop production systems on marginal lands in Ontario. U. of Guelph, School of Env Sci. 14 p.
Thevasathan N and Coleman B. 2017. Final narrative report: “Quantifying C stocks in high-yield, short-rotation woody crop production systems for forest and bioenergy values and CO2 emission reduction”. U. of Guelph, School of Env Sci. 11 p.