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MENDES, Aretusa Daniela Resende et al. Concentration and redistribution of mineral nutrients at different stages in the development of the rubber tree leaf.. Acta Amaz. [online]. 2012, vol.42, n.4, pp.525-532. ISSN 0044-5967. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0044-59672012000400010.
The Rubber tree during its adult phase presents intermittent growth within the leaf exchange process characterized by senescence, which is a nutrient-recycling mechanism used by trees through biochemical and biogeochemical cycles. Studies including biochemical cycles are necessary in order to verify the mineral nutrients' dynamics at different leaf stages. The conservation of such nutrients is very important to optimize the growing conditions for rubber plantations which are located in soils with low fertility. This study aims to evaluate the mineral nutrients' dynamics during different leaf stages of the rubber tree, leaves were collected from the clones of RRIM-600 taken from a rubber tree plantation in Nepomuceno County, State of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Eight adult examples with leaves in different stages: B1, B2, C and D, plus senescent leaves (Sen) were selected for the study. Samples from leaves in stages B1, B2, C and D were taken from the trees at the four orthogonal points; the senescent leaves were collected from the ground after mechanically shaking the branches. The study revealed a decrease in the level of N, P, K, S, Cu and Zn during the development of the rubber tree's leaf. In contrast, during the same period the levels of Ca, Mg, B, Fe and Mn increased. The redistribution for N, P, K and Cu was higher and the relative order of macronutrient and micronutrient levels in the leaves were respectively: N>K>Ca>Mg>S>P and Mn>Fe>Zn>B>Cu
Keywords : Hevea brasiliensis; Nutrient cycling; Nutrient redistribution; Leaf development; Plant nutrition.