Assessing land suitability of vegetation of Baramulla District, Kashmir Valley
Mudasir Majid Malik, Asima Nusrath
Baramulla district has rugged and hilly terrain, about 60 percent of the district is mountainous and 40 percent is plain area. The height varies between 1150 to 4400 meters. Vast proportion of land is characterized with steep slopes, devoid of vegetation and rocky outcrop. It also comprises beautiful meadows and glades. Being second rank amongst the forest divisions of Kashmir province in terms of wood yield, it needs to be assess the viability of vegetation expansion in study area. This study examines the biophysical suitability of vegetation in the area. Necessary data and information were collected from both primary and secondary sources. The results of biophysical suitability using variable and equal weights to the indicators showed that 8.01 and 27.17 percent of the area are highly suitable for vegetation growth. The highly suitable areas were primarily located in the Tehsils of Uri, Boniyar and some parts of Baramulla and Sopore. The highly suitable locations were matched with the NDVI, all of the observed sites in study area were located within highly suitable areas on the overall suitability map except some places in Boniyar, Kreeri and Tangmarg. The exceptional features in these places may be attributed to the limitations of temperature and elevation which are found to greatly affect Tangmarg.