Biology and Fertility of Soils

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 18–26

Mycorrhizae, biocides, and biocontrol 3. Effects of three different fungicides on developmental stages of three AM fungi

  • R. P. Schreiner
  • G. J. Bethlenfalvay
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/BF01420215

Cite this article as:
Schreiner, R.P. & Bethlenfalvay, G.J. Biol Fert Soils (1997) 24: 18. doi:10.1007/BF01420215


The effects of biocide use on nontarget organisms, such as arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi, are of interest to agriculture, since inhibition of beneficial organisms may counteract benefits derived from pest and disease control. Benomyl, pentachloronitrobenzene (PCNB) and captan were tested for their effects on the germination and early hyphal growth of the AM fungiGlomus etunicatum (Becker & Gerd.),Glomus mosseae (Nicol. & Gerd.). Gerd. and Trappe andGigaspora rosea (Nicol & Schenck) in a silty-clay loam soil placed in petri plates. Application of fungicides at 20 mg active ingredient (a.i) kg−1 soil inhibited spore germination by all three AM-fungal isolates incubated on unsterilized soil for 2 weeks. However, fungicides applied at 10 mg a.i. kg−1 soil had variable effects on AM-fungal isolates. Fungicide effects on germination and hyphal growth of G.etunicatum were modified by soil pasteurization and CO2 concentration in petri plates and also by placing spores below the soil surface followed by fungicide drenches. Effects of fungicides on mycorrhiza formation and sporulation of AM fungi, and the resulting host-plant response, were evaluated in the same soil in associated pea (Pisum sativum L.) plants. Fungicides applied at 20 mg a.i. kg−1 soil did not affect the root length colonized byG. etunicatum, but both benomyl and PCNB reduced sporulation by this fungus. Benomyl and PCNB reduced the root length colonized byG. rosea at 48 and 82 days after transplanting. PCNB also reducedG. mosseae-colonized root length at 48 and 82 days, but benomyl only affected root length colonized byG. mosseae at the earlier time point. Only PCNB reduced sporulation byG. mosseae, consistent with its effect on root length colonized by this fungus. captan reduced the root length colonized by G. rosea at 48 days, but not at 82 days, and reduced colonization byG. mosseae at 82 days, but not at 48 days. Captan did not affect sporulation by any of the fungi.G. rosea spore production was highly variable, but benomyl appeared to reduce sporulation by this fungus. Overall,G. etunicatum was the most tolerant to fungicides in association with pea plants in this soil, andG. rosea the most sensitive. Benomyl and PCNB were overall more toxic to these fungi than captan. Interactions of AM fungi and fungicides were highly variable and biological responses depended on fungus-fungicide combinations and on environmental conditions.

Key words

Arbuscular mycorrhizaFungicidesGlomusGigasporaBenomylCaptanPeaPisum sativumPentachloronitrobenzene

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. P. Schreiner
    • 1
  • G. J. Bethlenfalvay
    • 1
  1. 1.United States Department of AgricultureAgricultural Research and Education Service Horticultural Crops Research LaboratoryCorvailisUSA