Allelopathic potential of peatland plant species on germination and early seedling growth of Scots pine, silver birch and downy birch
Silva Fennica 26(2): 63-73
The potential allelopathic inhibitive effects of aqueous extracts of 13 peatland plant species on germination, radicle and seedling growth of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.), silver and downy birch (Betula pendula Roth, B. pubescens Ehrh.) were studied. Freshly cut plant parts were finely ground, mixed with distilled water and agitated. The proportions of fresh plant mass in the mass-based extracts varied within the range of 1, 5, 10 and 20% (w/w). The seeds were germinated in petri dishes moistened with the plant extracts. In a separate experiment growth of birch seedlings irrigated with the extracts was studied. Ledum palustre, Vaccinium uliginosum and Empetrum nigrum extracts, and in certain experiments extracts from other species, inhibited the germination of pine and birch seeds. Results from the different experiments were not, however, fully consistent. None of the low (1% w/w) extract concentrations had any effect on germination. Strong extract concentrations (20 w/w) germination of pine seedlings significantly. The extracts affected only slightly the growth of potted birch seedlings.