Brief Report

Short-term impact of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and different phosphorus levels on selected soil properties and growth components of two dry bean cultivars in phosphorus-deficient soils

Published in: South African Journal of Plant and Soil
Volume 37, issue 4, 2020 , pages: 321–325
DOI: 10.1080/02571862.2020.1757768
Author(s): Mavis Maserole Moila, South Africa, Alen Manyevere, South Africa, Sandile Mthimkhulu, South Africa, Irvine Mariga, South Africa


Low yields of dry beans are often associated with lack of inoculation with biofertilisers and deficiencies in soil phosphorus (P). A field experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and P fertiliser on dry bean growth and soil properties in Limpopo province, South Africa. The experiment was laid out in a split-split plot design. The main treatments were: (a) dry bean cultivars (red-speckled and small-white haricot), (b) sub-plot treatments: AMF inoculation (mycoroots) levels (with and without inoculation) and (c) sub-sub plot treatments: different levels of P (0, 20, 40 and 60 kg P ha−1). The soil and plant growth parameters were analysed using Analysis of Variance (p = 0.05). The interaction of cultivar and P levels indicated that P application improved growth and yield of both cultivars and also suggested that the optimum P level for red-speckled beans was 40 kg ha–1 while that of small-white haricot beans was 30 kg ha−1. Red-speckled beans showed greater growth and yield than the small-white haricot beans. There was no clear impact on soil properties in the short term. These results indicate that raising the soil P levels may improve dry bean growth and yield, and red-speckled beans could be a better option for farmers than small-white haricot beans.

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