Soil microbiome favors the performance of almond rootstock seedlings in co-cultivation with barrel medic


  • Maria Cañellas-Cifre
  • Antònia Romero-Munar
  • Rafael Bosch
  • Bàrbara Maria Quetglas
  • Jaume Vadell
  • Catalina Cabot



Soil microbiome influences plant growth and development. Moreover, crop co-cultivation practices have positive impacts on soil microbiome and function. In this study, soil microbiome from an almond field was collected to evaluate its effect on the growth of almond rootstock seedlings planted in pots with or without co-cultivation with Medicago truncatula. Four treatments were established: without legume and without microbiome (A); with legume and without microbiome (B); without legume and with microbiome (C) and with legume and with microbiome (D). After six weeks, no significant differences in culturable bacteria density in bulk soil or rhizospheric soil were found among treatments. Evapotranspiration rate per pot and day and plant growth, measured as increase in plant height per day, showed a similar tendency, with higher values found in non-inoculated plants in the first week of treatment, while, inoculated plants showed the highest values at the end of the experiment. M. truncatula co-cultivation increased pot evapotranspiration only in non-inoculated plants. Taken together these results suggest that the soil microbiome had a specific beneficial effect on the almond rootstock which could have negatively influenced the performance of M. truncatula.


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