EFFECT OF SOIL FUMIGATION ON CONCENTRATIONS OF K, CA, MG IN WITHANIA SOMNIFERA COLONIZED BY ARBUSCULAR MYCORRHIZAL FUNGI UNDER FIELD CONDITIONST. VijAYA AND C. NIRMALA
Plants of Withania somnifera were grown in field condition to assess the possible contribution of indigenous AM fungi to the K, Ca and Mg nutrition in presence of P fertilization. The field experiment had a split plot design with four replicates. The treatments included three levels of P fertilization (0, 75 and 150 Kg P,O, per hectare) with and without fumigation. Soil fumigation with ethidium bromide was used to suppress indigenous AM fungi. Plants were sampled at 30, 60, 90 and 120 days after planting in the field. Soil fumigation decreased shoot dry weight, percent mycorrhizal infection, extra radical hyphal length and uptake of K, Ca but not mg. P fertilization increased shoot dry weight, but decreased % mycorrhizal colonization, extra radical hyphal length at most sampling time. The results indicate that AM fungi could increase plant biomass and K, Ca and Mg uptake at low P levels.
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