GROWTH OF Mimosa caesalpiniifolia Benth., UNDER SHADE IN THE NORTHEAST SEMI-ARID REGION OF BRAZIL
ABSTRACT: Seedling production for reforestation aims to achieve the best plant growth in a minimal amount of time, to provide good survival and growth levels after transplantation. During cultivation, it is necessary to know the shading levels that lead to the best growth. The objective of this study was to assess the growth of young Mimosa caesalpiniifolia Benth. plants provided with various amounts of shade in the northeast semi-arid region of Brazil. Four types of shade cloth were tested (0, 30, 50 and 70%). Shoot length, stem diameter, stem dry matter, leaf dry matter, total dry matter and leaf area were assessed. Leaf area ratio, specific leaf area, absolute growth rate, relative growth rate and net assimilation rate were also calculated. The different shading levels affected M. caesalpinifolia growth, with the best growth indicators observed in plants grown under 50% shade, with increases in plant height, leaf area and total dry matter observed compared to the full sun condition.