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Determination of leaf sampling techniques to assess the nutritional status of Barbados cherry (Malpighia emarginata D.C.)

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 June 2002

José Francisco Teixeira do Amaral
Affiliation:
Department of Phytotechny, Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo, 29500-000, Alegre (ES), Brazil
Claudio Horst Bruckner
Affiliation:
Department of Phytotechny, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, 36571-000, Viçosa (MG), Brazil
Herminia Emilia Prieto Martinez
Affiliation:
Department of Phytotechny, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, 36571-000, Viçosa (MG), Brazil
Cosme Damiao Cruz
Affiliation:
Department of General Biology, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, 36571-000, Viçosa (MG), Brazil
Cleiton Lacerda Godoy
Affiliation:
Department of Phytotechny, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, 36571-000, Viçosa (MG), Brazil
Sérgio Luiz Caixeta
Affiliation:
Department of Phytotechny, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, 36571-000, Viçosa (MG), Brazil
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Abstract

Introduction. Research on the mineral nutrition of Barbados cherry is scarce. Leaf sampling techniques for this crop are unknown. Leaf analysis, associated with the determination of the nutrient availability in the soil, can provide reliable orientation for the establishment of fertilizer programs. For a correct interpretation of the nutritional status, it is important (1) to evaluate the seasonal variation of nutrient contents in the leaves, (2) to determine the appropriate time for leaf sampling and analysis, and (3) to indicate the best part of the plant for determination of the nutritional status. These subjects were the three objectives of this study. Materials and methods. The experiment was conducted from March 1997 to February 1998 in Visconde do Rio Branco, Minas Gerais, Brazil. The dynamics of the elements N, P, K, Ca, Mg, S, Fe, Cu, Zn and Mn were studied in leaves at the apical, median and basal positions of branches located in the upper, median and lower portions of the plant canopy. Results. The minimum variation in the foliar contents occurred at the medium third of the branches located in the upper portion of the canopy. So, these parts are the most appropriate for leaf sampling. Moreover, December was characterized as the appropriate time for leaf sampling. Conclusion. The leaf sampling techniques developed will allow better study of the mineral nutrition of M. emarginata in order to establish reliable fertilizer programs and to improve the yields of this fruit tree.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© CIRAD, EDP Sciences

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References

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Determination of leaf sampling techniques to assess the nutritional status of Barbados cherry (Malpighia emarginata D.C.)
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