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The aim of this study was to evaluate leaflet morphophysiological characteristics and plasticity index of three woody species in canopy and understory leaves in a gallery forest. Seedlings and adult trees of woody species of Myracrodruon urundeuva Fr. Allemão, Copaifera langsdorffii Desf. and Tapirira guianensis Aubl. were studied. Morphophysiological characteristics analyzed were petiole length (PL) and diameter (PD), leaflet thickness (fresh - FT and dry - DT), specific leaf mass (SLM) and water relative content (WRC). Plasticity index of leaflet traits were calculated by assessing leaf characteristics, between and across species. All morphophysiological characteristics varied within species. The leaflets of canopy trees showed significantly higher values of PL, PD, FT, DT and SLM, in relation to understory leaflets. On the other hand, WRC did not change between adult trees and seedlings, except for T. guianensis. The plasticity index of leaflet characteristics varied significantly within species. Plasticity index of three morphophysiological characteristics (PL, PD and DT) varied between species. PL and PD had the highest plasticity index values across species, whereas WRC had the lowest plasticity. Plasticity index of tree species associates these leaflet morphophysiological traits (PL, PD and DT) with variations in the physical environment between strata of a gallery forest.