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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

Print version ISSN 0100-0683On-line version ISSN 1806-9657

Abstract

HEBERLE, Elaine dos Santos et al. Occurrence and Structure of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungal Communities in Cassava after Cultivation of Cover Crops as Observed by the “PCR-DGGE” Technique. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2015, vol.39, n.5, pp.1292-1301. ISSN 1806-9657.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/01000683rbcs20140216.

Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is a highly mycotrophic crop, and prior soil cover may affect the density of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMFs), as well as the composition of the AMFs community in the soil. The aim of this study was to evaluate the occurrence and the structure of AMFs communities in cassava grown after different cover crops, and the effect of the cover crop on mineral nutrition and cassava yield under an organic farming system. The occurrence and structure of the AMFs community was evaluated through polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). A randomized block experimental design was used with four replications. Six different cover crop management systems before cassava were evaluated: black oats, vetch, oilseed radish, intercropped oats + vetch, intercropped oats + vetch + oilseed radish, plus a control (fallow) treatment mowed every 15 days. Oats as a single crop or oats intercropped with vetch or with oilseed radish increased AMFs inoculum potential in soil with a low number of propagules, thus benefiting mycorrhizal colonization of cassava root. The treatments did not affect the structure of AMFs communities in the soil since the AMFs communities were similar in cassava roots in succession to different cover crops. AMFs colonization was high despite high P availability in the soil. The cassava crop yield was above the regional average, and P levels in the leaves were adequate, regardless of which cover crop treatments were used. One cover crop cycle prior to the cassava crop was not enough to observe a significant response in variables, P in plant tissue, crop yield, and occurrence and structure of AMFs communities in the soil. In the cassava roots in succession, the plant developmental stage affected the groupings of the structure of the AMF community.

Keywords : Manihot esculenta; arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi; root symbioses.

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