, Volume 237, Issue 2, pp 249-255

Phosphorus (P) efficiencies and mycorrhizal responsiveness of old and modern wheat cultivars

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A pot experiment was carried out in a growth chamber to investigate P efficiencies and mycorrhizal responsiveness of modern (Krichauff and Excalibur) and old (Khapstein, Bobin, Comeback and Purple Straw) wheat cultivars (Triticum aestivum). The arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF) used in this study was Glomus intraradices. The growth medium was a soil/sand mixture with NaHCO3-extractable P of 9.4 mg P kg−1 and no extra P was added. Plant P efficiencies (uptake, utilisation and agronomic) were found to differ significantly between cultivars, but no general trends of changes with the year of release of the cultivar were found. AMF colonisation was found to decrease plant growth under our experimental conditions with low light intensity. Mycorrhizal responsiveness (MR) was measured in terms of the improvement in plant P nutrition (shoot P concentrations). MR was found to be generally lower in modern cultivars than in old cultivars, indicating that modern breeding programs may have reduced the responsiveness of modern wheat cultivars to arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. MR was also found to decrease in general with increased plant P utilisation efficiency.