The determination of leaf area is of fundamental importance in ecophysiological studies that seek to understand the plant-environment relationship. The objective of this research was to determine an allometric equation to estimate the leaf area of Mesosphaerum suaveolens from linear measures of leaf blade (length and/or width). There were collected 900 random leaf limbs of different shapes and sizes, in an anthropic area of caatinga, located in the municipality of Santa Luzia, state of Paraíba, Northeast of Brazil. For the construction of the allometric equations the following regression models were used: linear, linear without intercept, quadratic, cubic, power, and exponential. The linear model without intercept using the product between length and width (C.L) was the most recommended to estimate the leaf area of M. suaveolens, with greater coefficient of determination (R2) and Willmott concordance index (d), lesser mean absolute error (MAE), Akaike information criterion (AIC) and root-mean-square error (RQME), and the closer the BIAS ratio is to zero (R2 = 0.9971; d = 0.9989; MAE = 0.422; AIC = 2094.69; RQME = 0.770; BIAS = -0.0105). The leaf area of M. suaveolens can be estimated satisfactorily by equation AF = 0.6787*(C.L).
alfazema-brava; biometry; Lamiaceae; non-destructive method