Effect of eucalyptus (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) and maize (Zea mays) litter on growth, development, mycorrhizal colonization and roots nodulation of Arachis hypogaea
In Senegal, farmers often cultivate groundnut in association with eucalyptus plantations to increase their incomes. However eucalyptus plantations produce large amounts of litter, which impact on groundnut has not been clearly elucidated yet. In order to investigate litter accumulation effect on growth, development, and groundnut root infection by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and rhizobia, a greenhouse experiment was performed. The effect of eucalyptus litter was compared to that maize litter effect at three litter amendments (0, 1 and 5%). Chemical analysis showed that eucalyptus litter differed essentially from maize litter by its high polyphenols content and lower pH. At high amendment (5%), root nodulation and mycorrhizal colonization were significantly reduced with eucalyptus litter whereas no significant differences were observed with maize litter. In addition, groundnut growth, number of flowers per plant, pods yield and leaf mineral contents (N and C) were significantly lower for plant grown in soil highly amended with eucalyptus litter. Plants showed deficiency of chlorophyll content in leaves and were less vigorous compared to treatments without amendment and those amended at 1% level. For all parameters measured, plants grown in soil lowly amended (1%) and plants grown in control treatment did not significantly differ.
Key words: Litter, Eucalyptus, Arachis hypogaea, Mycorrhizal symbiosis, Rhizobia.