Growth and quality parameters of Tea (Camellia sinensis) mediated by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi
Keywords:Antioxidant, Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, Camellia sinensis, Chlorophyll, IAA, Polyphenol
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) inoculation not only increases the growth but also improves the quality of many commercial plants. Tea (Camellia sinensis) plants were grown on different growth medium (with and without AMF inoculation) and the chemical properties of the leaves were assayed and compared. The growth media were sterilized soil with AMF, sterilized soil, natural soil inoculated with AMF, natural soil, and natural soil in natural condition with AMF. The highest root colonization (23 %) was found in tea plants grown on natural soil with AMF, whereas no colonization was found in the sterilized soil treatment. The highest level of leaf chlorophyll-a (2.74±0.06 μg.mL-1), chlorophyll-b (1.77±0.03 μg.mL-1) and carotenoid (0.35±0.01 μg.mL-1) contents were found in tea plants grown on natural soil under natural condition with AMF. The highest polyphenol concentration (64.46 mg.L-1) was found in natural soil inoculated with AMF whereas the lowest (38.09 mg.L-1) was recorded in sterilized soil. The highest contents of tannin (30.34 mg.mL-1) and reducing sugar (46.61 mg.L-1) were recorded in plants grown on natural soil under natural condition with AMF and the lowest values (21.22 mg.mL-1, 33.16 mg.L-1, respectively) in sterilized soil treatment. Though antioxidant properties (% scavenging effect) did not differed due to treatments, the highest IAA (Indole-3-acetic acid) concentration (3.16 μg.mL-1) was recorded in tea plants grown on natural soil under natural condition with AMF. The study concludes that AMF inoculation improves the quality of tea leaves.
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