Fungal roots diseases update February 2015

At the Forest Research Institute (IBL) in Poland we have tested several strains of biological control agents against pathogens causing damping-off. We tested the strains on seedlings of Scots pine, common beech and pedunculate oak in Poland in greenhouse experiments. We used strains of Serratia plymuthica, Paenibacillus polymyxa and Trichoderma harzianum. There was a very large variation in the results until now and we will repeat the experiments in 2015.

Trichoderma strain

The effect of the potential biological control agent Trichoderma harzianum has also been investigated in more detail in Italy by the University of Padova by checking for the presence of Trichoderma harzianum strain INAT 11 and other naturally occurring Trichoderma strains in nursery soil samples sent to the University of Padova by the Forest Research Institute (IBL). Furthermore, also root colonization by strain INAT 11 was evaluated on root samples of seedlings of common beech, pedunculate oak, and Scots pine provided by IBL.

After setting up an adequate study protocol, the inoculum of INAT 11 has been assessed in soil used in nursery trials of the tree species. Treatments with uninoculated soil and inoculated soil have been carried out. Soil and root samples were collected and analysed for the colonization of Trichoderma harzianum.

So far we can conclude that the Trichoderma harzianum strain INAT 11 that was used, survives in inoculated soil in which the 3 tree species were grown. It well colonized the common beech, pedunculate oak and Scots pine seedlings and could therefore be a potential biocontrol product to control damping-off.

Read more about our activities on fungal roots diseases.


Katarzyna Sikora
Katarzyna Sikora