Abstract—The ecology of the highly invasive plant species C. odorata is poorly studied in the Philippines in spite of the fact that it is hard to eradicate, a nuisance in plantations, and known to harm farm animals and decimate forage and native plant species. In order to determine the abundance and distribution of the species and its possible relationship with local ecological factors, we estimated in 75 transect lines the percentage cover of C. odorata and other plant species growing around it, and concurrently determined soil parameters (soil type, pH, total nitrogen, total phosphorus, total potassium, and % organic matter) in three Provinces of the Zamboanga Peninsula, Southern Philippines. Multivariate Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) revealed no significant relationship between soil parameters and the abundance of C. odorata suggesting eurytopy to edaphic conditions. Peak abundance of C. odorata was associated with coconut, banana, mango, gemelina and mahogany plantation environments, and reduced abundance of native plant species. This study shows that C. odorata is highly adaptive and a potential threat to native plant biodiversity and agro-ecosystem sustainability, and that its distribution seems to be supported by plant monoculture system.
Index Terms—Chromolaena odorata L., invasive plants, biodiversity, multivariate analysis, community ecology.
L. T. Codilla is a PhD (Biology) candidate at the Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology, and an Instructor at the JH Cerilles State College, Mati, San Miguel, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines 9200 (e-mail: ltcodilla@ yahoo.com).
E. B. Metillo is a Professor at the Department of Biological Sciences, Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology, Iligan City, Philippines 9200 (e-mail: email@example.com).
Cite: Lina T. Codilla and Ephrime B. Metillo, "Distribution and Abundance of the Invasive Plant Species Chromolaena odorata L. in the Zamboanga Peninsula, Philippines," International Journal of Environmental Science and Development vol. 2, no. 5, pp. 406-410 , 2011.