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[APD] Re: allelopathic thoughts (random)

I have seen a number of pictures of plants growing submersed in rivers or large streams, and they are usually quite fuzzy with attached algae. If there is some kind of evolutionary race between plants to discourage attached algae and algae to overcome the plants' defenses, the algae are doing pretty well. Of course, the plants seem to be pretty large and healthy too, just fuzzy-looking. One wonders how bad the algae has to get to cause problems for the plant. One wonders if the plants would be doing a lot better if the algae were not there. How close to the edge of surviving/not surviving are the plants? Could they take a worse algae load and still survive? These are important questions in ecology that are hard to answer. If any species of submersed aquatic plant had an edge over other species in discouraging attached algae, it would look 'cleaner' than others, provided that they grew at the same distance from the surface and got the same amount of light. I wonder if alterations in the waxy layer of the leaf surface might discourage attachment of algae. If a plant could shed cuticle, that would give it an edge because it could shed the attached algae. The attachment glues of algae would be interesting to study.
Paul Krombholz in chilly central Mississippi, going down to about 22 F tonight.
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