Recent research bridging mechanistic and ecological approaches demonstrates that plant attributes can affect herbivores, natural enemies of herbivores, and their interaction. Such effects may be genetically variable among plants and/or induced in individual plants by herbivore attack, and are mediated by primary plant attributes (i.e. nutritional quality and physical structure) and defense-related products (i.e. secondary chemicals and plant volatiles), and may be modified by human activity (e.g. by the introduction of Bacillus thuringiensis). The study of tri-trophic interactions is important in order to understand natural species interactions and to manipulate these interactions in pest control.