Weed and Crop Allelopathy

Leslie Weston, Stephen O. Duke

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    341 Citations (Scopus)


    Allelopathy can be defined as an important mechanism of plant interference mediated by the addition of plant-produced secondary products to the soil rhizosphere. Allelochemicals are present in all types of plants and tissues and are released into the soil rhizosphere by a variety of mechanisms, including decomposition of residues, volatilization, and root exudation. Allelochemical structures and modes of action are diverse and may offer potential for the development of future herbicides. We have focused our review on a variety of weed and crop species that establish some form of potent allelopathic interference, either with other crops or weeds, in agricultural settings, in the managed landscape, or in naturalized settings. Recent research suggests that allelopathic properties can render one species more invasive to native species and thus potentially detrimental to both agricultural and naturalized settings. In contrast, allelopathic crops offer strong potential for the development of cultivars that are more highly weed suppressive in managed settings. Both environmental and genotypic effects impact allelochemical production and release over time. A new challenge that exists for future plant scientists is to generate additional nformation on allelochemical mechanisms of release, selectivity and persistence, mode of action, and genetic regulation. In this manner, we can further protect plant biodiversity and enhance weed management strategies ina variety of ecosystems.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)367-389
    Number of pages23
    JournalCritical Reviews in Plant Sciences
    Issue number3/4
    Publication statusPublished - 2003


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