• Phenology is the study of regularly occurring life cycle events. A plant's phenology is determined by the interaction of its genetic make-up and its biotic and abiotic environment.

• Plants allocate their limited resources to the functions of growth, maintenance and reproduction. Species will do this in different ways, and allocation patterns change with the environment.

• Weeds are often phenotypically plastic and this allows them to take advantage of environmental heterogeneity.

• Their genetic make-up and the abiotic environment (e.g. temperature and light) determine a plant's response via phenology, resource allocation and phenotypic plasticity. This is known as the genotype x environment interaction.

• Senescence is the natural deterioration of plants (or plant parts) leading to death at the end of the plant's life cycle.

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