Faye, A., Dalpé, Y., Ndung'u-Magiroi, K., Jefwa, J., Ndoye, I., Diouf, M. and Lesueur, D. 2013. Evaluation of commercial arbuscular mycorrhizal inoculants. Can. J. Plant Sci. 93: 1201-1208. In order to improve the use of commercial inoculants, 12 arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) inoculants were evaluated in a two-step experiment under greenhouse conditions using maize. First, commercial mycorrhizal inoculants were propagated in a trap pot culture experiment under sterilized sand to evaluate their potential for maize (Zea may L.) root colonization as compared with an indigenous soil inoculum and to survey the AMF species present in the products. Three inoculants significantly increased root colonization levels compared with a soil inoculum. Instead of 12 declared AMF species, 13 fungal strains were extracted from the pot culture survey, including five undeclared species, while four declared species did not produce spores. In a second experiment, commercial products were inoculated into soil to assess their impact on maize growth and yield. Six weeks after planting, seven inoculants increased root colonization levels compared with control soil, while only three inoculants increased slightly the shoot biomass of maize plants. These experiments highlight the need to pre-evaluate commercial mycorrhizal inoculants on a selected crop and regional soil before launching large-scale field use.
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