What is plant allelopathy?

Plants are very interesting beings: decorative, useful, with a more or less easy maintenance (depending on the species)… But, in addition, there are some that are allelopathic. What does that mean? Well, they produce one or more biochemical compounds that influence the growth, survival or reproduction of other plant beings. It is interesting then to know what allelopathy is , since in this way we will know why some plants do not manage to grow when they are cultivated under the branches of others.

Allelopathy is a phenomenon by which there are species that are capable of controlling the expansion of others by expelling, mainly through their leaves, some biochemical compounds (a kind of gas invisible to our eyes), which when in contact with a seed or a plant can prevent it from continuing to grow (which would be negative allelopathy) or on the contrary it can help it to develop (positive allelopathy).

Thus, in the first case, little by little, the plant below it weakens for no apparent reason, and will finally die. For example, this can happen if we plant palm trees near pine trees, for example. In the second case, on the other hand, what will happen is that the fruits have a better flavor, which is what happens if, for example, lettuce is planted with spinach in a ratio of 4 to 1.

There are some plants that have toxic roots for other species, such as eucalyptus or Ficus

Allelopathic plants are of great interest for agriculture and gardening. Thus, in the garden we can use a series of plants to protect crops from some pests , such as lavender or rosemary . But we must be careful with species that come from very dry or very humid climates, such as Ficus, Acacia , Salix (Willow), or Eucalyptus , because their roots, in addition to being invasive, will not let anything (or practically anything) ) grow near them.

What is plant allelopathy?

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