Different effect of mycorrhizal inoculation in direct and indirect reclamation of spoil banks
AbstractSpoil banks generated during coal mining are usually reclaimed by layering of fertile soil over original barren clay (co called indirect reclamation). This well-proven method is effective from the aspect of vegetation establishment and production, but it is very expensive. Direct reclamation of spoil bank clay promises much cheaper approach, yet its success is uncertain and the process might be rather long-term.
This two-year field study aimed to assess the effect of application of commercially produced inoculum of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) Symbivit® on growth of two plant species commonly used for reclamation (Lotus corniculatus and Arrhenatherum elatius) sown on three different substrates: organic substrate (mixture of papermill waste, tree-bark and compost) and loess (both substrates typical for indirect reclamation) and original spoil bank clays (simulation of direct reclamation). On organic substrate and loess, A. elatius outcompeted the legume and established 100 % cover in all treatments. The effect of mycorrhizal inoculation was not observed. In contrast, on clay both species established successfully. The produced biomass and cover were, however, substantially lower compared to organic substrate and loess. In clay the positive effect of introduced AMF on plant was observed.
Mycorrhizal inoculation was useful for supporting plant growth at direct reclamation. Direct reclamation in itself seems suitable for small-scale application, i.e. in patches where indirect reclamation is inconvenient or more diverse vegetation is required.
Key words: arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi; inoculum; clay; papermill waste; loess; Arrhenatherum elatius; Lotus corniculatus
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