Mycorrhizae associated with olive trees in the Mediterranean basin

Vesicular-Arbuscular-Mycorrhizal (VAM) fungi are obligate plant symbionts known for their general ability to promote plant health. Olive tree is a particularly mycotrophic plant and structures of VAM are consistently seen in the roots of olive in long-established plantations. However, there is not enough knowledge concerning the effect of cropping practices, olive varieties and environment (soil type and climate) on the biodiversity of VAM in the Mediterranean Region.

VAM in parenchyma of an olive root

In olive, some studies have demonstrated beneficial effects of the use of commercial and indigenous VAM in promoting the growth and establishment of olive planting stocks after transplanting in arid regions and when applied into soil-borne-infested soil, reducing severity of root galling as well as reproduction of Meloidogyne spp., and reducing severity and disease development of Verticillium wilt, indicating a protective effect against biotic and abiotic stresses.

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