Germination and growth of some semidesert grassland species treated with aqueous extract from creosotebush

TitleGermination and growth of some semidesert grassland species treated with aqueous extract from creosotebush
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1966
AuthorsKnipe D., Herbel C.H.
Date Published1966
Keywordsaqueous extract, creosotebush, germination, semidesert grassland species
AbstractThe effects of aqueous extracts from creosotebush (Larrea tridentafa) material on germination and initial growth of black grama (Bouteloua eriopoda), bush muhly (Muhlenbergia porteri) and creosotebush were studied. There was no apparent difference among extracts obtained from the various creosotebush plant parts. An aqueous extract from leaves and twigs significantly reduced germination of black grama caryopses, but the germination of bush muhly caryopses and creosotebush seeds (removed from the carpels) was not affected. Less concentrated extracts did not significantly reduce germination of the test species. However, radicle and plumule growth of black grama and bush muhly were significantly reduced by all extracts. Apparently, the relatively low osmotic concentrations or the moderate pH's were not responsible for these reductions in growth. Comparisons among creosotebush seeds (removed from the carpel) watered with a carpel extract and a water-mannitol solution of the same osmotic concentration and carpels treated with water indicated a structural characteristic or a nonwater-soluble chemical compound in the carpel which inhibits germination of creosotebush. Germination of creosote bush seeds treated with water-mannitol solutions of 1.50, 3.50, 5.00 and 7.00 atm osmotic concentration was significantly reduced as compared to those treated with low concentrations simulating field capacity. Nutrient solution recycled for 37 days around the roots of creosotebush plants growing in a gravel-sand substratum was not inhibitory to germination or initial growth. In a pot test, creosotebush extracts created a crust on the soil surface which reduced the infiltration rate of water. Some of the preceding factors may possibly contribute to the degeneration of grassland areas where creosotebush is present.