Eucalypt as trap plant to capture associative fungi in soil samples from great depth

Abstract There are only very few papers reporting on mycorrhizal and endophytic fungi along a whole soil profile in great depth. The objective of our study was to find propagules of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AMF), ectomycorrhizal (ECM) and dark septate endophytic fungi (DSE) using Eucalyptus grandis as trap plant. We sampled soil of the surface to eight m down in a four-years-old eucalypt plantation. The sampled soil was used as seeding substrate in 300 ml-pots in the greenhouse at a temperature of 28ºC. Plants were grown for 100 days before harvest and evaluation of fungal presence in the plantlets. In most of the treatments (soil layers of increasing depth) we found root colonization of plantlets by different fungi. In some of the treatments, even in some originating from very deep soil layers, we detected the synthesis of ectomycorrhizal fruiting bodies. Some of the fungi in the plants could be isolated and identified. Therefore, we conclude that in every one of the different soil layers there was the presence of one or more potentially associative fungi with this tree.

Keywords Arbuscular Mycorrhiza, Dark septate Endophytes, Deep soil layers, Ectomycorrhiza.

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