, Volume 25, Issue 5, pp 1079-1089

Essential Oils as Allelochemicals and Their Potential Use as Bioherbicides

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Essential oils were extracted from 32 aromatic plants and evaluated for allelopathic properties. The major components of the oils were identified by gas chromatography and GC-MS. Extracts from Origanum syriacum, Micromeria fruticosa, and Cymbopogon citratus were selected for further study. The germination of several species, including wheat, was strongly inhibited by essential oils when applied at 20–80 ppm. Essential oils mixed with the top 0.5 cm of soil inhibited germination of wheat and Amaranthus seeds. This effect depended on the type of soil. The possible use of essential oils as herbicides is discussed.