The arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus could help olive trees to grow
Osmotic stress caused by NaCl supply reduced stem diameter, number of shoots, shoot length and nutrients in olive plants, but fungus colonization alleviated all of these negative effects on growth
The influence of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi colonisation on photosynthesis, mineral nutrition, the amount of phospholipids and glycolipids in the leaves of olive (Olea europaea L.) trees was investigated. After six month of growth, the rate of photosynthesis, carboxylation efficiency, transpiration and stomatal conductance in mycorrhizal (M) plants was significantly higher than that of non-mycorrhizal (NM) plants. The inoculation treatment increased the foliar P and Mg but not N. The amount of glycolipids in the leaves of M plants was significantly higher than that of NM plants. However, the amount of phospholipids in the leaves of M plants was not significantly different to that in the leaves of NM plants. Also, we observed a significant increase in le level of α-linolenic acid (C18:3ω3) in glycolipids of M plants. This work support the view that increased glycolipids level in the leaves of M plants could be involved, at least in part, in the beneficial effects of mycorrhizal colonization on photosynthesis performance of olive trees. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the effect of AM fungi on the amount of glycolipids in the leaves of mycorrhizal plants.
Inoculating olive plantlets with the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) Glomus mosseae, Glomus intraradices or Glomus claroideum increased plant growth and the ability to acquire nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium from non-saline as well as saline media. AMF-colonized plants also increased in survival rate after transplant. Osmotic stress caused by NaCl supply reduced stem diameter, number of shoots, shoot length and nutrients in olive plants, but AMF colonization alleviated all of these negative effects on growth. G. mosseae was the most efficient fungus in reducing the detrimental effects of salinity; it increased shoot growth by 163% and root growth by 295% in the non-saline medium, and by 239% (shoot) and by 468% (root) under the saline conditions. AMF colonization enhanced salt tolerance in terms of olive growth and nutrient acquisition. Mycorrhizal olive plants showed the lowest biomass reduction under salinity (34%), while growth was reduced by 78% in control plants. This G. mosseae effect seems to be due to increased K acquisition; K content was enhanced under salt conditions by 6.4-fold with G. mosseae, 3.4-fold with G. intraradices, and 3.7-fold with G. claroideum. Potassium, as the most prominent inorganic solute, plays a key role in the osmoregulation processes and the highest salinity tolerance of G. mosseae-colonized olive trees was concomitant with an enhanced K concentration in olive plants.