Diversity and ecology of soil fungal communities in rubber plantations uri icon

abstract

  • Monoculture rubber cultivation and its intensive associated human activities are known to have a negative impact on the biodiversity, ecology, and biological conservation of the ecosystems in which they occur. These negative impacts include changes to the biodiversity and function of soil fungal communities, which contribute towards nutrient cycling and interact with other organisms in belowground ecosystems, and may be pathogens. Despite the important role of soil fungi in rubber plantations, these communities have been poorly studied. In this paper, we review the existing literature on the diversity and ecology of belowground fungi in rubber plantations. Various groups of soil fungi, including saprobes, symbionts, and pathogens are discussed. Additionally, the role of plantation management is discussed in the context of both pathogenic soil fungi and the promotion of beneficial soil fungi. Management practices include clone selection, tree age and planting density, application of chemicals, and intercropping systems. Our review shows the strong need for further research into the effects of monoculture rubber plantations on soil fungal communities, and how we can best manage these systems in the future, in order to create a more sustainable approach to rubber production. © 2016 British Mycological Society

publication date

  • 2017
  • 2017