The effect of resource pulses on the competitiveness of a tropical invader depends on identity of resident species and resource type.
Different species have differential physiological requirements and ecological strategies, and the resident species and resource type may affect invasiveness of alien plants. Resource pulse is an important factor influencing the invasion status of alien plants. Here, we tested the effects of irradiance and nutrient pulse on the competitiveness of the invasive plant Chromolaena odorata when cultured with two resident plants, Abelmoschus manihot and Xanthium sibiricum. Our results suggest that the response of competitiveness to a resource pulse (nutrient and irradiance) depended on species identity - Chromolaena odorata was more competitive with Abelmoschus manihot than with Xanthium sibiricum under resource pulse. Moreover, Chromolaena odorata has higher advantage than resident species in competitive conditions but not in monoculture conditions. This study provided information for controlling the future spread of invasive C. odorata.