Effects of resident soil fungi and land use history outweigh those of commercial mycorrhizal inocula: testing a restoration strategy in unsterilized soil

  • Published source details Paluch E.C., Thomsen M.A. & Volk T.J. (2013) Effects of resident soil fungi and land use history outweigh those of commercial mycorrhizal inocula: testing a restoration strategy in unsterilized soil. Ecological Restoration, 21, 380-389.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Inoculate soil with mycorrhiza before seeding/planting

Action Link
Grassland Conservation
  1. Inoculate soil with mycorrhiza before seeding/planting

    A replicated, controlled study in 2008–2011 in a greenhouse in Wisconsin, USA (Paluch et al. 2013) found that adding mycorrhizal fungi to soil before seeding did not alter the dry weight of three native grass and forb species. Dry weight of plants did not differ significantly between those grown in soil with added mycorrhizal fungi and those grown in untreated soil for the native grasses Canada wild rye Elymus canadensis (mycorrhiza added: 0.06–0.15 g; untreated: 0.09–0.13 g) and little bluestem Schizachyrium scoparium (mycorrhiza added: 0.02–0.07 g; untreated: 0.02–0.04 g), or the forb heath aster Aster ericoides (mycorrhiza added: 0.01–0.11 g; untreated: 0.05–0.06 g). Seeds of each species were sown into twenty 50-ml tubes containing sieved soil in December 2008. Sixteen tubes were treated with one of four commercial mycorrhizal treatments at a rate of 149–597 g/m3, and four were left untreated. All species were over-seeded and then thinned to one individual/tube, and watered regularly. Total plant dry weight was calculated 83 days after sowing.

    (Summarised by: Philip Martin)

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