Water stress, fertilization and light effects on the growth of nodulated, mycorrhizal red alder seedlings Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/cv43nz83r

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  • Red alder (Alnus rubra Bong.) seedlings fertilized with NH4NO3 or inoculated with a pure culture Fran/cia and inoculated with live or dead spores of the mycoirhizal fungus Alpova diplophloeus (Zeller & Dodge) Trappe & Smith were grown in a growth chamber or in a greenhouse for six months Frankia inoculation and subsequent modulation and N2-fixation increased seedling growth more than N-fertilization Alpova inoculation significantly increased seedling growth in some parameters by increments of 6 to 16 % but only when the seedlings were also inoculated with Frankia. Water stress significantly decreased nodule and Alpova ectomycorrhiza development, N2-fixation, growth and photosynthesis of red alder seedlings Alpova inoculation did not improve water relations of red alder seedlings Heavy N-fertilization with 5 ml of 50mM NH4NO3 per seedling three times a week significantly increased mycorrhiza formation and N and P concentration m leaves but decreased N-fixation, shoot growth and P concentration in nodules P fertilization with 5 ml of 5mM KH2PO4 per seedling three times a week significantly increased total N-fixation Light intensities below photosynthetic photon flux density of 220 umol/m2/s significantly decreased N2- fixation, total plant growth and photosynthesis, but increased leaf area, shoot to root ratio and N and P concentrations in plant tissues Reduced light significantly decreased Alpova mycorrhiza formation after three-weeks shading in Experiment 1 but not after ten-weeks shading of Experiment 2 During the long shade exposure of Experiment 2, alder seedlings adapted morphologically to low light intensity, thus moderating negative effects on mycorrhiza formation, plants were unable to do this in the 3-week shade period of Experiment 1 Results suggest that Frankia is more important for Alpova mycorrhiza formation and growth of red alder seedlings than Alpova is for nodule formation and growth Alder seedlings apparently adapt to a certain point of light stress by increasing leaf area and shoot growth and maintain balanced symbiont development and growth N-fertilization does not affect modulated alder plant growth. The importance of P fertilization and mycorrhizae to plant growth increases with plant size and age.
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