Reproductive phenology and seed germination in eight tree species from a seasonally dry tropical forest of Morelos, Mexico, implications for community-oriented restoration and conservation

Núñez-Cruz A., Meave J. A., Bonfil C

Publication Date:

With the aim of providing information for ecological restoration programs, we studied reproductive phenology and seed germination of eight species from the tropical dry forest of Morelos, Mexico. With the participation of students from the local junior high school, we monitored monthly, over one year, the production of flowers, immature and mature fruits for each species. We estimated intensity, duration, seasonality, and synchrony for each fruiting phenophase, and flowering duration. Germination tests were undertaken in a germination chamber (18–32 °C), and under the environmental conditions at the local school. We applied specific pre-germination treatments for each species. Two distinct peaks of mature fruit production were identified: one at the beginning and the other one in the middle of the dry season. Fructification seasonality was significant in most cases. Germination was relatively high in three legumes and particularly low in two Bursera species. Four species responded to the germination environments, and differences among pre-germination treatments were significant in most cases. Knowledge on fruiting patterns and seed viability and germination will allow adequate decision-making for seed collection and plant propagation of the study species. Student participation increased their interest and knowledge on local environmental problems and solutions.

Resource Type:
Peer-reviewed Article

Tropical Conservation Science