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Soil factors influencing the growth response of Acacia holosericea A. Cunn. ex G. Don to ectomycorrhizal inoculation

Duponnois R., Kisa M., Prin Y., Ducousso M., Plenchette C., Lepage M., Galiana A.. 2008. New Forests, 35 (2) : p. 105-117.

Australian acacias like Acacia holosericea are excellent candidates for the revegetation of arid zones in Africa. Their high ability to develop multiple symbioses with soil microorganisms is crucial to their rapid development in adverse climatic and edaphic conditions. These symbioses include nitrogen fixation with rhizobia, vesicular arbuscular mycorrhization and ectomycorrhization. We set up an experiment to test the growth response of A. holosericea to ectomycorrhizal inoculation in 13 different soils from Senegal. After autoclaving the soil, the experiment was conducted in a greenhouse for four weeks. Plants were inoculated with Pisolithus albus strain IR100. The following parameters were measured: plant biomass, N, P, K and Ca foliar composition, spontaneous nodulation rate, and ectomycorrhizal colonization. Data were analyzed in light of the physical, chemical and total microbial characteristics of the soil. The results demonstrated a global promoting effect of P. albus inoculation on plant (shoot and root) growth and on foliar P and K, together with a depressive effect on N, while Ca rates were barely affected. Interestingly, spontaneous nodulation with putative water- or airborne rhizobia was stimulated after P. albus inoculation. However, these nodules seemed poorly effective, as they failed to cause any change in plant growth or in foliar N composition within the nodulated and nonnodulated control plants. These results show that plant growth response to ectomycorrhizal inoculation is greatly dependent on soil characteristics, and that root ectomycorrhizal colonization is influenced by biotic factors such as soil microbiota. From a practical point of view, data from the present study demonstrate that it is possible to optimize the effect of fungi on plant growth by screening soils under nursery conditions. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés : pisolithus; expérimentation; symbiose; croissance; mycorhizé; inoculation; facteur édaphique; acacia holosericea; sénégal; pisolithus albus

Thématique : Biologie du sol; Fertilité du sol; Physiologie végétale : croissance et développement

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