Plant and Soil

, Volume 354, Issue 1, pp 269–281

Stem growth and phenology of two tropical trees in contrasting soil conditions


    • Laboratório de Ecologia Vegetal; Departamento de Botânica, SCBUniversidade Federal do Paraná
  • R. Marques
    • Departamento de Solos e Engenharia AgrícolaUniversidade Federal do Paraná
  • P. C. Botosso
    • Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária, Embrapa Florestas
  • M. C. M. Marques
    • Laboratório de Ecologia Vegetal; Departamento de Botânica, SCBUniversidade Federal do Paraná
Regular Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11104-011-1063-9

Cite this article as:
Cardoso, F.C.G., Marques, R., Botosso, P.C. et al. Plant Soil (2012) 354: 269. doi:10.1007/s11104-011-1063-9


Background and aims

Phenological variations in tropical forests are usually explained by climate. Nevertheless, considering that soil water availability and nutrient content also influence plant water status and metabolism, soil conditions may also be important in the regulation of plant reproductive and vegetative activities over time. We investigated whether phenological patterns and stem growth differ in trees growing in two types of soil that display contrasting water and nutrient availability, namely, Gleysol (moist and nutrient-poor) and Cambisol (drier and nutrient-rich).


Phenological observations (flushing, leaf fall, flowering and fruiting) and stem diameter growth were recorded for 120 trees fitted with fixed dendrometer bands, at 15 days intervals, for 1 year. Two species of contrasting deciduousness were investigated: Senna multijuga (semi-deciduous) and Citharexylum myrianthum (deciduous).


Both species were seasonal in all phenophases, regardless of soil type. However, frequency, mean date and intensity of phenophases varied according to soil type. Girth increment of C. myrianthum was four times greater in Cambisol than in Gleysol, whereas the type of soil had no significant effect on that of S. multijuga.


These results show that soil characteristics also play an important role in determining phenological patterns and growth and must be considered when analysing phenological patterns in tropical forests.


Citharexylum myrianthumDiameter growthSeasonal rhythmsSenna multijugaSoil nutrientsTropical forest

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011