Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

The Allelopathic Potential of Kudzu (Pueraria montana)

  • Md H. Rashid (a1), Takashi Asaeda (a1) and Md N. Uddin (a1)

We explored the allelopathic potential of kudzu as a function of its phenolics. Aqueous and methanol extracts of different kudzu organs (leaf, stem, root, and seed) were assayed for allelopathy with the use of lettuce and radish seeds. Both leaf and root extracts significantly inhibited all of the measured germination indices (total germination, speed of germination, and coefficient of the rate of germination) (all P < 0.01). When treated with leaf extract, the total germination of both species was ∼ 20% less than the control. Furthermore, the leaf extract significantly reduced the speed of germination to 38 and 53% that of the lettuce and radish controls, respectively. Lettuce and radish seeds soaked in leaf and root extracts for 24 h imbibed less water (∼ 30% for both species) than those soaked in distilled water (control), suggesting that a reduction of water imbibition might be one of the mechanisms of germination retardation. Stem and seed extracts affected neither the water uptake nor the germination indices of radish and lettuce seeds. Kudzu leaves and roots contain higher amounts of total phenolics (P = 0.001) and soluble phenolics (P = 0.005) than stems and seeds, consistent with the results of the germination bioassays. In agar plate bioassays, both litter and rhizosphere soil had phytotoxic effects on the radicle growth of radish (P = 0.003) and perennial ryegrass (P = 0.001) seedlings. Perennial ryegrass and cobbler's pegs seedlings grown on leaf and root leachate-amended soil gave ∼ 40% shorter roots and shoots and ∼ 50% less dry weight than those grown in leachate-free soil. Kudzu litter was incorporated and incubated in soil for 6 wk, at which point the soluble phenolics in the soil solution were at a level (> 150 ppm) considered to be allelopathic.

Corresponding author
Corresponding author's E-mail:
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

A. I. Al-Humaid and M. O. A. Warrag 1998. Allelopathic effects of mesquite (Prosopis juliflora) foliage on seed germination and seedling growth of bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon). J. Arid Environ. 38:237243.

R. R. Allaie , Z. Reshi , I. Rashid , and B. A. Wafai 2006. Effect of aqueous leaf leachate of Anthemis cotula—an alien invasive species on germination behaviour of some field crops. J. Agron. Crop Sci. 192:186191.

H. P. Bais , R. Vepachedu , S. Gilroy , R. M. Callaway , and J. M. Vivanco 2003. Allelopathy and exotic plant invasion: from molecules and genes to species interactions. Science. 301:13771380.

R. M. Callaway 2002. The detection of neighbors by plants. Trends Ecol. Evol. 17:104105.

G. Chiapusio , A. M. Sánchez , M. J. Reigosa , L. González , and F. Pellissier 1997. Do germination indices adequately reflect allelochemical effects on the germination process? J. Chem. Ecol. 23:24452453.

C. H. Chou and Z. A. Patrick 1976. Identification and phytotoxic activity of compounds produced during decomposition of corn and rye residues in soil. J. Chem. Ecol. 2:369387.

L. S. Emeterio , A. Arroyo , and R. M. Canals 2004. Allelopathic potential of Lolium rigidum Gaud. on the early growth of three associated pasture species. Grass Forage Sci. 59:107112.

Y. Fujii , T. Shibuya , K. Nakatani , T. Itani , S. Hiradate , and M. M. Parvez 2004. Assessment method for allelopathic effect from leaf litter leachates. Weed Biol. Manag. 4:1923.

J. D. Horner , J. R. Gosz , and R. G. Cates 1988. The role of carbon-based plant secondary metabolites in decomposition in terrestrial ecosystems. Am. Nat. 132:869883.

Inderjit , 1996. Plant phenolics in allelopathy. Bot. Rev. 62:182202.

Inderjit , C. Asakawa , and K. M. M. Dakshini 1999. Allelopathic potential of Verbesina encelioides root leachate in soil. Can. J. Bot. 77:14191424.

Inderjit , and J. Weiner 2001. Plant allelochemical interference or soil chemical ecology? Perspect. Plant Ecol. Evol. System. 4:312.

Z. Iqbal , S. Hiradate , A. Noda , S. Isojima , and Y. Fujii 2003. Allelopathic activity of buckwheat: isolation and characterization of phenolics. Weed Sci. 51:657662.

G. N. Johnson , A. J. Young , J. D. Scholes , and P. Horton 1993. The dissipation of excess excitation energy in British plant species. Plant Cell Environ. 16:673679.

T. Kamo , S. Hiradate , and Y. Fujii 2003. First isolation of natural cyanamide as a possible allelochemical from hairy vetch Vicia vilosa . J. Chem. Ecol. 29:275283.

H. Kato-Noguchi 2003b. Allelopathic substances in Pueraria thunbergiana . Phytochemistry. 63:577580.

A. Kirakosyan , P. B. Kaufman , S. Warber , S. Bolling , and J. A. Duke 2003. Quantification of major isoflavonoids and L-canavanine in several organs of kudzu vine (Pueraria montana) and in starch samples derived from kudzu roots. Plant Sci. 164:883888.

V. Kumar , D. C. Brainard , and R. R. Bellinder 2009. Suppression of Powell amaranth (Amaranthus powellii) by buckwheat residues: role of allelopathy. Weed Sci. 57:6673.

F. A. Macias , D. Castellano , and J. M. G. Molinillo 2000. Search for a standard phytotoxic bioassay for allelochemicals. Selection of target species. J. Agric. Food Chem. 48:25122521.

C. A. Marwood , K. T. Bestari , R. W. Gensemer , K. R. Solomon , and B. M. Greenberg 2003. Chlorophyll fluorescence as a bioindicator of creosote toxicity to plant growth in aquatic microcosms. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 22:10751085.

K. Maxwell and G. N. Johnson 2000. Chlorophyll fluorescence—a practical guide. J. Exp. Bot. 51:659668.

R. Moran 1982. Formulae for determination of chlorophyllous pigments extracted with N, N-dimethylformamide. Plant Physiol. 69:13761381.

R. Moran and D. Porath 1980. Chlorophyll determination in intact tissues using N, N dimethylformamide. Plant Physiol. 65:478479.

D. K. Pandey 1996. Phytotoxicity of sesquiterpene lactone parthenin on aquatic weeds. J. Chem. Ecol. 22:151160.

K. J. Pue , U. Blum , T. M. Gerig , and S. R. Shafer 1995. Mechanism by which noninhibitory concentration of glucose increases inhibitory activity of p-coumaric acid on morning-glory seedling biomass accumulation. J. Chem. Ecol. 21:833847.

K. Roháček and M. Barták 1999. Technique of the modulated chlorophyll fluorescence: basic concepts, useful parameters, and some applications. Photosynthetica. 37:339363.

D. A. Sampietro , M. A. Vattuone , and M. I. Isla 2006. Plant growth inhibitors isolated from sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum) straw. J. Plant Physiol. 163:837846.

J. A. Shofield , A. E. Hagerman , and A. Harold 1998. Loss of tannin and other phenolics from willow leaf litter. J. Chem. Ecol. 24:14091421.

Z. S. Siddiqui 2007. Allelopathic effects of black pepper leachings on Vigna mungo (L.) Hepper. Acta Physiol. Plant. 29:303308.

R. P. Stowe , D. W. Koenig , S. K. Mishra , and D. L. Pierson 1995. Nondestructive and continuous spectrophotometric measurement of cell respiration using a tetrazolium–formazan microemulsion. J. Microbiol. Methods. 22:283292.

A. M. Tawaha and M. A. Turk 2003. Allelopathic effects of black mustard (Brassica nigra) on germination and growth of wild barley (Hordeum spontaneum). J. Agron. Crop Sci. 189:298303.

H. Thijs , J. D. Shann , and J. D. Weidenhamer 1994. The effect of phytotoxins on competitive outcome in a model system. Ecology. 75:19591964.

M. K. Tsanuo , A. Hassanali , A. M. Hooper , Z. Khan , F. Kaberia , J. A. Pickett , and L. J. Wadhams 2003. Isoflavanones from the allelopathic aqueous root exudate of Desmodium uncinatum . Phytochemistry. 64:265273.

S. Uraguchi , I. Watanabe , K. Kuno , Y. Hoshino , and Y. Fujii 2003. Allelopathy of floodplain vegetation species in the middle course of Tama River. J. Weed Sci. Technol. 48:117129. [In Japanese with English summary].

D. A. Wardle , M. Ahmed , and K. S. Nicholson 1991. Allelopathic influence of nodding thistle (Carduusnutans nutans L.) seeds on germination and radicle growth of pasture plants. N. Z. J. Agric. Res. 34:185191.

D. C. Whitehead , H. Dibb , and R. D. Hartley 1981. Extractant pH and the release of phenolic compounds from soil, plant roots and leaf litter. Soil Biol. Biochem. 13:343348.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Weed Science
  • ISSN: 0043-1745
  • EISSN: 1550-2759
  • URL: /core/journals/weed-science
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 5 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 92 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 20th January 2017 - 24th July 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.