Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Tea tree and wintergreen essential oils in the management of the invasive species Cortaderia selloana and Nicotiana glauca.

Abstract

The chemical composition of tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) and wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens) essential oils as well as their phytotoxic effects against two invasive species -Cortaderia selloana and Nicotiana glauca - were studied. Fifty-eight compounds accounting for 98.89-99.94% of the total commercial tea tree and wintergreen essential oils were identified by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis. Tea tree essential oil with terpinen- 4-ol (28.37 ± 0.05%) followed by 1,8-cineole (15.81 ± 0.06%), γ-terpinene (15.60 ± 0.03%), α-pinene (10.92 ± 0.08%) and α-terpinene (8.52 ± 0.01%) as the main compounds did not produce significant effects against seed germination and hypocotyl growth of N. glauca, but showed significant effects in seed germination inhibition of C. selloana (34.69%) as well as in hypocotyl (60.96%) and radicle (62.55%) growth, at the highest dose (1 μl . ml-1) assayed. High amounts of methyl salicylate (99.63 ± 0.02%) were found in G. procumbens essential oil with remarkable phytotoxic effects in C. seollana. Methyl salicylate inhibited seed germination (77.38%) and hypocotyl and radicle growth (96.38% and 96.65%, respectively) at the highest dose (1 μl . ml-1) assayed. Wintergreen essential oil constitutes an eco-friendly alternative to control the high capacity of invasiveness of C. selloana.