Biology and fertility of soils vol:38 issue:6 pages:367-376
In this study, the effect of an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF) and two migratory endoparasitic nematodes on Musa plant growth, including the root system, were examined. In addition, the AMF-nematode interaction was studied. Seven Musa genotypes with different root systems were selected. Based on their relative mycorrhizal dependency, two genotypes (Calcutta 4 and Obino l'Ewai) were selected for AMF-nematode interaction studies. The experiments were performed under greenhouse conditions. Mycorrhization with Glomus mosseae resulted in a significantly better plant growth even in the presence of nematodes. The effect of AMF on the root system was genotype-dependent and seemed to be related to the relative mycorrhizal dependency of the genotype. The nematodes also affected the root system, decreasing branching. Nematode population densities were significantly reduced in the presence of AMF, except for Pratylenchus coffeae in Obino l'Ewai. In the root system, it appeared that the decreased branching caused by the nematodes was counterbalanced by the increased branching caused by the AMF.