Leaf area estimation is an important feature in physiological research involving predominantly photosynthesis, transpiration and growth. This study was carried out to develop a practical and nondestructive empirical mathematical model to estimate the area of one leaf and the total leaf area for papaya trees (Carica papaya L.). Two irrigated commercial orchards were evaluated over a period of 50 to 550 days after transplanting, during which the length of the leaf midrib (LM) varied from 0.04 to 0.60 m. A mathematical model was developed to estimate the area of one leaf for the papaya tree, taking into account LM and the age of the plant measured in days after transplanting. The model was considered satisfactory. Based on the average length of the last two leaves of the crown and the total leaf number of the plant, it was possible to satisfactorily estimate the total leaf area of the papaya tree.
Carica papaya L.; papaya; model; leaf architecture; biometry