Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 73, Issue 1, pp 37–45 | Cite as

Effects of single and dual inoculation with selected microsymbionts (rhizobia and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi) on field growth and nitrogen fixation of Calliandra calothyrsus Meissn

  • Didier LesueurEmail author
  • Amadou Sarr


Our study aimed to assess the effect of dual inoculation with the selected Rhizobium strain KWN35 and the arbuscular mycorrhizal isolate BEG 176 (Glomus etunicatum) on the growth of Calliandra calothyrsus cultivated under irrigation in the field in Senegal (Dakar) over a period of 24 months. Although plants inoculated with both microsymbionts grew better (height and root collar diameter) than plants from three other inoculation treatments (control, single inoculation with KWN35 or BEG 176), these results were not statistically different except at 1 and 5 months after field transplantation. KWN35 was present in a relatively high percentage of nodules harvested from plants inoculated with this rhizobial strain either alone or with mycorrhiza (approximately 60% and 40% 1 and 2 years after field transplantation respectively). The percentage of mycorrhizal root infections was around 60% in the inoculated plants after 12 months with significantly higher N, P and K foliar contents of trees compared with the non-inoculated controls. However, as for nodulation, by 24 months after transplantation, there were no significant differences between treatments. We conclude that field inoculation of C. calothyrsus with Rhizobium strain KWN35 and arbuscular mycorrhizal isolate BEG 176 did not have a long-lasting effect on the growth of trees, even when a majority of nodules were occupied by the inoculated rhizobia and the roots infected by the mycorrhiza. Several reasons can be postulated for these results, such as a possible effect of soil fertility on the efficiency of the nodules.


Agroforestry systems Calliandra calothyrsus Competitiveness of rhizobia Nodule occupancy Symbiotic N2 fixation Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi 



This work was funded by the European Commission (INCO DEV contract ICA-CT-2001-10093). The authors are grateful to Aliou Faye, Jacques Biagui, Cheikh Ndiaye and Lamine Ba for their technical assistance in the nursery and in the field. We wish to thank Dr David Odee for reviewing the manuscript and editing the English.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CIRAD, PERSYST Department, UPR  Ecosystems of PlantationsLaboratoire Commun de Microbiologie (UCAD/IRD/ISRA)DakarSenegal
  2. 2.CIRAD, PERSYST Department, UPR  Ecosystems of PlantationsTropical Soil Biology and Fertility Institute of CIAT (TSBF/CIAT), World Agroforestry CentreNairobiKenya

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