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Background: Neotropical species lack autecological information. Among these, are phenological studies, which help to understand forest dynamics and provide important contributions to the collection, restoration, and conservation programs. This research aimed to characterize the vegetative and reproductive phenological behavior of neotropical species Geoffroea spinosa Jacq. in a seasonally dry tropical forest, as well as to verify if there is a correlation between phenophases and environmental parameters. Twenty individuals were accompanied monthly for two years, to detect and tally the presence of floral buds, flowers, immature fruits, ripe fruits, leaf emergence, presence of mature leaves, and defoliation. A semi-quantitative evaluation was carried out with the Fournier method.
Results: The results showed that the population had synchrony of reproductive events, with more than 50% of the individuals blooming and fruiting during the same time interval. Furthermore, the circular statistical test indicated a high seasonality for reproductive events (r ≥ 0.50 and p < 0.001). Among the vegetative events, all were classified as non-seasonal (r < 0.5). G. spinosa, showed a significant correlation (p ≤ 0.05) for all meteorological variables evaluated.
Conclusion: The reproductive phenophases of G. spinosa showed strongly seasonal behavior, unlike vegetative events. the period between mid-February and the end of March was the most propitious for fruit collection. No seasonality was observed for the vegetative events. The species proved to be sensitive to El niño conditions. Follow-up phenological studies associated with meteorological variables are important for a better understanding of the dynamics of vegetative behavior in response to climate change.
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