Biology and Fertility of Soils

, Volume 36, Issue 4, pp 284–297 | Cite as

Effect of inoculation with wild type Azospirillum brasilense and A. irakense strains on development and nitrogen uptake of spring wheat and grain maize

  • Sofie Dobbelaere
  • Anja Croonenborghs
  • Amber Thys
  • David Ptacek
  • Yaacov Okon
  • Jos Vanderleyden
Original Paper

Abstract.

Under the controlled conditions of the greenhouse and by varying some biotic and abiotic factors, we tried to identify some of the factors critical to obtain successful Azospirillum inoculation. Spring wheat and grain maize were inoculated with different concentrations of the wild type strains A. brasilense Sp245 and A. irakense KBC1, and grown in a substrate with varying concentrations of organic matter (OM) and N fertiliser. The inoculum concentration was one of the factors that influenced most the outcome of an inoculation experiment on wheat, with lower inoculum concentrations (105–106 cfu plant–1) stimulating root development and plant dry weight and higher inoculum concentrations (107–108 cfu plant–1) having no effect or sometimes even inhibiting root development. The effect of inoculation was most pronounced at low to intermediate N fertilisation levels, while the OM content of the substrate had no effect. Inoculation was found to affect early plant and root development, plant and root dry weight, grain yield and the N-uptake efficiency of plants. However, inoculation did not change the N concentration in plants or grains. In addition, a difference in the ability of both strains to stimulate plant growth and N uptake of wheat and maize was observed, with A. brasilense Sp245 having most effect on spring wheat and A. irakense KBC1 being more effective on grain maize. The significance of the obtained results for agriculture is discussed.

Inoculum concentration Nitrogen fertilisation Nitrogen-uptake efficiency Organic matter 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sofie Dobbelaere
    • 1
  • Anja Croonenborghs
    • 1
  • Amber Thys
    • 1
  • David Ptacek
    • 1
  • Yaacov Okon
    • 2
  • Jos Vanderleyden
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre of Microbial and Plant Genetics, Department of Applied Plant Sciences, K.U. Leuven, Kasteelpark Arenberg 20, 3001 Heverlee, Belgium
  2. 2.Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology, The Otto Warburg Centre for Agricultural Biotechnology, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot 76100, Israel

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