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Industrial agriculture is an increasingly prevalent practice within the Midwest and along with this practice lies the issue of abandonment of these sites. This study takes place at the Great Miami Mitigation bank which was previously used for agriculture for at least 80 years. The primary goal of this study is to investigate the influence of previously established seeding mixes and soil amendments on the microbial community. These treatments were applied with the intention of facilitating succession in a post agricultural field by deducing what treatments most effectively produced optimal conditions for microbes to establish symbiotic relationships with native seedlings. Treatments applied to the study site were incorporated to achieve an intermediate prairie with the long-term goal of establishing a mature oak-hickory forest. EMF colonization will be estimated to deduce what treatments support the establishment of the microbial community. Additionally, from these results, it can be determined if there is a correlation between intensity of colonization and factors such as plant community structure, enzyme activity and biomass of Q. Macrocarpa seedlings. A total of 480 Quercus macrocarpa seedlings were established at our study site in May of 2022. Following this, in Fall of 2022 80 Q. Macrocarpa seedlings were collected after one growing season for the purpose of assessing EMF colonization. While results are preliminary, thus far analysis has shown that percent root length colonization was not significantly different when looking at the seeding mix and soil amendments together and individually. Additionally, there was no difference in percent root length colonization and the biomass of the seedlings as a total unit and the biomass of the root system. Further analysis needs to be done to determine if there is any correlation between root colonization and the structure of the plant community as well as enzyme activity.
Primary Advisor's Department
Stander Symposium, College of Arts and Sciences
Institutional Learning Goals
Practical Wisdom; Critical Evaluation of Our Times; Vocation
"Measuring Mycorrhizal Colonization: Estimating Percent Root Length Colonization on Quercus Macrocarpa Seedlings Following One Growing Season" (2023). Stander Symposium Projects. 3086.