Growth-survival tradeoff in the widespread tropical shrub Baccharis dracunculifolia (Asteraceae) in response to a nutrient gradient

Daniel Negreiros*, Daniela Esteves, G. Wilson Fernandes, Ricardo L.L. Berbara, Yumi Oki, Marcelo Vichiato, Clarissa Chalub

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Baccharis dracunculifolia DC. (Asteraceae) is a widely distributed species colonizing environments with a wide range of nutritional conditions, ranging from low fertility degraded areas to high fertility agriculture fields. The goal of this study was to evaluate the survival and early growth of B. dracunculifolia seedlings grown across a gradient of nutrient availability. This study was conducted in a greenhouse located at the Serra do Cipó, southeastern Brazil. Seedling survival, biomass partitioning and growth rate were recorded every 15 days, between 30 and 90 days after transplanting in soils with increasing nutritional availability. We found reduced seedling survival and higher biomass accumulation and growth rate with increasing nutrient availability indicating a clear trade-off between these parameters. There are evidences that the high phenotypic variability shown by B. dracunculifolia seedlings may play an important role in the capacity of this species to colonize disturbed areas with contrasting nutrient availability conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-176
Number of pages10
JournalTropical Ecology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Cerrado
  • Nutritional gradient
  • Phenotypic variability
  • Ruderal
  • Rupestrian grasslands
  • Seedling growth
  • Stress resistance


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