The role of water-soluble components in phytotoxicity from decomposing straw
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When seedling development is slowed by the presence of straw in wet seed-beds both microbial products and compounds of plant origin contribute to phytotoxicity. Hot (100°C) water-soluble extracts from fresh straw contained phytotoxic substances but these accounted for less of the phytotoxicity than the microbial products, primarily acetic acid, from anaerobic fermentation of the insoluble straw polysaccharides (cellulose and hemicelluloses). The water-soluble components however also included mineral salts required in the decomposition of these polysaccharides.
Key wordsAcetic acid Hot water-soluble components Phytotoxins Straw
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