, Volume 118, Issue 1-2, pp 133-137

Response of field-grownCasuarina equisetifolia to inoculation withFrankia strain ORS 021001 entrapped in alginate beads

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Abstract

A large scale field experiment (ca 1 ha) was carried out in Senegal, to evaluate the response ofCasuarina equisetifolia to inoculation withFrankia strain ORS 021001 entrapped in alginate beads. Biomasses (expressed as dry weight or total nitrogen) of assimilatory branchlets, wood and roots, and nodules were measured in uninoculated and inoculated trees, randomly sampled 1,2 and 3 years after transplantation in the field. When biomasses were expressed as dry weight, increases due to inoculation were similar at the three sampling dates, 45, 36 and 40%, respectively. When biomasses were expressed as total nitrogen, the response to inoculation with time was much higher in the 2nd year than in the 1st and 3rd year. N2 fixation, estimated using the difference method reached 2.48, 12.25 and 13.44 g N2 fixed annually per tree. Correspondingly, nodule dry weights, expressed in g per tree, were 2.5, 12.18 and 22.75 at the end of the 1 st, 2nd and 3rd year, respectively. In spite of the positive response of field-grownCasuarina equisetifolia to inoculation, the decrease of N2 fixation observed in the third year was probably due to unfavorable climatic conditions coupled with insect attacks at the beginning of the third year.