WALNUT CULTURAL MODELS IN CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN ITALY: SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC ASPECTS2
49 walnut (Juglans regia L.) plantations over 10 years old were studied. 37 plantations were specialized for wood production and they were located in inner marginal areas. 12 plantations were double purposed for fruit and wood production and they were located in Campania region, in areas where walnut cultivation is traditional.
The analysis concerned i) site characteristics ii) wood production iii) adopted cultural practices iv) landowners' social and economic motivations and expectations in walnut plantations v) land value.
This paper reports first results concerning owners' expectation and motivation in comparison with agro-ecological site characteristics and adopted cultural techniques. Discussion was carried out separately for plantations for wood production and double purposed plantations.
In plantations for wood production, most owners planted walnut trees in order to occupy their land with long term investment and to increase or at least to maintain the patrimonial value of their land property. Site condition was difficult for specialized agricultural activity. Land value was low. Cultural techniques were often irregular. Wood quality was often low.
In double purposed plantations owners were interested in profitable investment in first place for annual nut production and in second place for final wood production. Site condition was very fertile and favorable for agricultural activity. Land value was very high. Walnut plantations were always in mixture with fruit trees. Cultural techniques were intensive. Wood quality was good.
First results suggest the necessity to improve walnut cultural models for inner areas in order to increase walnut wood quality on the basis of the owners' interest.