Volatile seed germination inhibitors from plant residues

Abstract

Volatile emissions from residues of the winter cover legumes, Berseem clover (Trifolium alexandrinum L.), hairy vetch [Vicia hirsuta (L.) S.F. Gray], and crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum L.), inhibited germination and seedling development of onion, carrot, and tomato. Using GC-MS, 31 C2-C10 hydrocarbons, alcohols, aldehydes, ketones, esters, furans, and monoterpenes were identified in these residue emission mixtures. Mixtures of similar compounds were found in the volatiles released by herbicide-treated aerial and root residues of purple nutsedge (Cyperus rotundus L.) and the late-season woody stems and roots of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). Vapor-phase onion, carrot, and tomato seed germination bioassays were used to determine the time- and concentration-dependent inhibition potential of 33 compounds that were either identified in the plant residue emissions or were structurally similar to identified compounds. Cumulative results of the bioassays showed that (E)-2-hexenal was the most inhibitory volatile tested, followed by nonanal, 3-methylbutanal, and ethyl 2-methylbutyrate. All the volatile mixtures examined contained at least one compound that greatly inhibited seed germination.

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Bradow, J.M., Connick, W.J. Volatile seed germination inhibitors from plant residues. J Chem Ecol 16, 645–666 (1990). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01016477

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Key words

  • Allelopathy
  • allelochemicals
  • Allium cepa
  • Daucus carota
  • Lycopersicon esculentum
  • volatiles
  • cover crops
  • conservation tillage
  • cotton
  • hydrocarbons
  • alcohols
  • ketones
  • aldehydes
  • furans
  • esters