Allelopathy in Compositae plants. A review
EFARINET Co. Ltd., BI Center, Chosun University,
2 Department of Agronomy, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA
* Corresponding author:
Accepted: 20 July 2009
Allelopathy plays an major role in agricultural management such as weed control, crop protection, and crop re-establishment. Compositae plants have potent allelopathic activity, and the activity is confirmed through (a) bioassays with aqueous or various solvent extracts and residues, (b) fractionation, identification, and quantification of causative allelochemicals, and (c) mechanism studies on the allelochemicals. Most assessments of allelopathy involve bioassays of plant or soil extracts, leachates, fractions, and residues based on seed germination and seedling growth in laboratory and greenhouse experiments. Plant growth may be stimulated below the allelopathic threshold, but severe growth reductions may be observed above the threshold concentration depending upon the sensitivity of the receiving species. Generally germination is less sensitive than is seedling growth, especially root growth. Some approaches showed that field soil collected under donor plants significantly reduced or somewhat promoted growth of the test plants. Petri-dish bioassays with methanol extracts or fractions and causative phenolic allelochemicals showed significant phytotoxic activities in concentration-dependent manner. Delayed seed germination and slow root growth due to the extracts could be confounded with osmotic effects on rate of imbibition, delayed initiation of germination, and especially cell elongation; the main factor that affects root growth before and after the tip penetrates the seed coat. Light and electron microscopic approaches extract evaluation at the ultrastructural level have been precisely investigated. Many Compositae plants have allelopathic potentials, and the activities and types and amount of causative compounds differ depending on the plant species. The incorporation of allelopathic substances into agricultural management may reduce the use of pesticides and lessen environmental deterioration.
Key words: allelopathy / Compositae plants / eco-friendly weed control / bioassay / extracts / fractions / residues / water-soluble / activation mechanism / phenol compounds
© INRA, EDP Sciences, 2009