Does Tithonia diversifolia (aka "Mexican Sunflower") have a symbiotic relationship with diazotrophs that fix nitrogen in the soil from the nitrogen in the air?

Mexican Sunflower is not a legume, but I've read on some websites that they can increase the nitrogen in the soil. But I've been unable to find a credible source of information stating that diversifolia has a symbiotic relationship with diazotrophs.

I have read that Mexican Sunflower is a nutrient accumulator. Does that mean that they just accumulate nitrogen from other nitrogen fixers? Or do they actually fix nitrogen?

Is Tithonia diversifolia (Mexican sunflower) a nitrogen fixer?

1 Answer 1


As far as I know none of the Asteraceae family can fix nitrogen. However, I found this -

As a representative of rapid growth Asteraceae plant, M. micrantha, its metabolites can increase the availability of nitrogen by enriching the microbes that participate in nitrogen cycling pathways.

From Comparative genomics reveals a unique nitrogen-carbon balance system in Asteraceae

This may or may not apply to Tithonia diversifolia. Perhaps it applies to all the Daisy family of plants.

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