Recent Topics Posters
Bainard, L.D. , Gordon, A.M. , Klironomos, John N. .
The mycorrhizal status and colonization of 27 tree species in urban and rural environments.
Urban environments are highly disturbed and fragmented ecosystems that characteristically have low plant species diversity and are occupied by a high proportion of non-native species. In addition, soils in urban ecosystems commonly have a lower mycorrhizal fungal species richness and diversity compared to rural or natural ecosystems. The objective of this study was to determine whether the mycorrhizal status and colonization of trees are influenced by the environment (rural vs. urban) they are growing in. Soil cores were collected from the rhizosphere of trees growing in urban and rural environments around southern Ontario. Roots were extracted from the soil cores to determine whether the trees were colonized by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, ectomycorrhizal fungi, or both; and to quantify the percent colonization of each type of mycorrhizal fungi. All 27 tree species were colonized by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, and 8 tree species were colonized by both arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and ectomycorrhizal fungi. The arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization ranged from 2.4 – 53.4% root length colonized, and ectomycorrhizal colonization from 14.4 – 50.8% root tips colonized. Overall, arbuscular mycorrhizal and ectomycorrhizal fungal colonization was significantly (P < 0.001) lower in trees growing in urban compared to rural environments. It is not clear what factors are responsible for the reduction in mycorrhizal fungal abundance. More research is needed to determine whether inoculating urban trees with mycorrhizal fungi would increase colonization levels and the overall performance of the trees.
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1 - University of Guelph, Integrative Biology, 50 Stone Road East, Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1, Canada
2 - University of Guelph, Department of Environmental Biology, 50 Stone Road East, Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1, Canada
3 - University of Guelph, Integrative Biology, Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1, Canada
arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi
Presentation Type: Recent Topics Poster
Location: Event Tent/Cliff Lodge
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2009
Time: 5:30 PM