Biodiv Sci ›› 2018, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (6): 554-563.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2018002

• Original Papers: Plant Diversity • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Comparison of morphology, photosynthesis, and growth among Xanthium strumarium, X. sibiricum and their hybrid under different nitrogen levels

Chenyang Xue1, Yufeng Xu1, Bo Qu1,2,*()   

  1. 1 College of Biological Technology, Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang 110161
    2 Liaoning Key Laboratory of Biological Invasions and Global Changes, Shenyang 110161
  • Received:2018-01-03 Accepted:2018-03-18 Online:2018-06-20 Published:2018-09-11
  • Contact: Qu Bo
  • About author:# Co-first authors


Hybridization of invasive plants with native plants may alter their invasiveness. To investigate whether hybridization can promote plant invasions, we carried out a pot experiment to compare morphology, photosynthesis, and growth of the invasive plant Xanthium strumarium, the native plant X. sibiricum and their hybrid (X. strumarium♀ × X. sibiricum♂) under three nitrogen (N) levels, i.e. low, medium and high. Total biomass of the hybrid was smaller than that of X. strumarium but larger than that of X. sibiricum at the medium and high N levels. However, stem diameter of the hybrid was significantly higher than its parents at the low N level, its total chlorophyll content and transpiration rate were significantly higher than X. strumarium at the high N level, and its relative growth rate was higher than its parents at the low and high N levels. Moreover, plant height of X. strumarium was significantly lower than that of X. sibiricum at all three N levels, but plant height of the hybrid was not significantly different from that of X. sibiricum at the medium and high N levels. These characteristics may improve the hybrid’s ability to capture and use resources, which can not only help the hybrid adapt to a poor nutrient environment, but can also help to improve its advantages under favorable conditions. The higher growth rate of the hybrid may be associated with the invasiveness of X. strumarium.

Key words: Xanthium strumarium, Xanthium sibiricum, invasive plant, hybridization