Deficiency in mycorrhizal inoculum in soils due to land use types (LUT) can be alleviated by quantity and quality inoculum addition. A bioassay was carried out to determine how host soil mycorrhizal inoculum influenced mycorrhizal colonization, carbon allocation and partitioning of seedlings of two native timber species of Cameroon humid forest. Seedlings ofPterocarpus soyauxii and Lophira alata were raised for six months on surface soils (0 - 20 cm) collected from early secondary forests and LUT derived from slash-and-burn agriculture and selective logging. Mycorrhizal inoculation effect (MIE) was derived. Seedlings were mainly colonized by members of the Glomaceae and Gigasporaceae, respectively, as shown by molecular typing. They generally performed poorly in soils with indigenous inoculum. But addition of soil inoculum from P. soyauxii trees favored nodulation, significantly increased mycorrhizal colonization and total biomass but decreased root-to-shoot ratios, resulting in large and positive MIE, irrespective of LUT. ln contrast, host soil inoculum of L. alata did not affect fractional mycorrhizal colonization but significantly increased total biomass and resulted in high carbon allocation to roots in low and sometimes negative MIE. Therefore, seedlings' responses to mycorrhizal inoculum depend on host soil inoculum and that could be critical for successful rejuvenation of tropical trees.
Key words: Arbuscular, mycorrhiza-host, soil, inoculum-Iand use types, Pterocarpus soyauxii, Lophira alata, Cameroon.
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