Skip to content

Evolutionary Botany and Functional Ecology

6 ECTS Kourou Year 2 Semester 3 Compulsory Environmental sciences


This module is divided into three parts:

  • Architecture, botany, systematics:

Dendrometry/allometry, growth.

Individual strategies of space occupation (germination, establishment, vegetative propagation).

Temperaments, functional groups and emerging groups.

Morphological trends in tropical forest plants.

Architectures and biological types.

Dissemination. Seeds, seedlings and establishment adaptations.

  • Interface plant-soil:

Functioning of mycorrhizal and nitrogen-fixing symbioses in forest ecosystems,

Phosphorus and nitrogen cycling,

Wildlife-plant interactions,

Use of wildlife to restore fertility in forest and agricultural soils.

  • Interface plant-atmosphere

Carbon assimilation,

Functional diversity,

Stand dynamics,

C/N stable isotope,

Water flux in the soil-tree-atmosphere continuum (absorption strategy, heat balance, hydraulic conductance, cavitation…).

Learning outcomes

The module provides the knowledge necessary to interpret the structures and behaviours of plants in tropical forest contexts. The links between adaptation, morphology, behaviour and evolution will be explored.

The second objective of this module is to provide instruction in the functional ecology of tropical trees and forest stands interacting with the soil and atmosphere.

Teaching and learning methods

Lactures, mostly in the classroom and some in the forest (Paracou field station).

Type of assessment

  • Individual
  • Written exam


  • Location : Kourou
  • ECTS granting : AgroParisTech
  • Organisation : AgroParisTech


Sabrina Coste

Sabrina Coste

  • Other, Kourou France