Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 92, Issue 2, pp 541–554 | Cite as

Impact of tree species on barley rhizosphere-associated fungi in an agroforestry ecosystem as revealed by 18S rDNA PCR-DGGE

  • Qiang Zhang
  • Min Zhang
  • Peng Zhou
  • Yanming FangEmail author
  • Yonghua Ji


Agroforestry systems have been considered a form of sustainable land use. Woody species in agroforestry systems can improve soil physicochemical properties by supplying leaf or stem litter. However, little is known about fungal community structure and diversity in agroforestry systems. In the present study, the culture-independent 18S rDNA-based polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) method was used to investigate fungal community structure in rhizosphere and bulk soil in Populus euramevicana-barley and Taxodium distichum-barley agroforestry systems. DGGE profiling and cluster analysis revealed that the fungal community structure in the rhizosphere was more complex than that of bulk soil. Our results also indicated that the rhizosphere fungal community in barley was less affected by T. distichum than by P. euramevicana. In addition, an increase in the relative abundance of certain rhizosphere fungal populations was detected in this agroforestry system. Sequencing of prominent DGGE bands revealed an increase in the rhizosphere of a fungal species belonging to the genera Chaetomium, which includes potential biocontrol agents. A rare cellulolytic fungus, Acremonium alcalophilum, was found in the bulk soil from P. euramevicana and barley grown under P. euramevicana. Taken together, our findings may provide new insights into agroforestry practices.


PCR-DGGE Fungal community Rhizosphere Agroforestry 



This study was funded by the National Forestry Public Welfare Industry Research Project (201304211), the Collaborative Innovation Plan of Jiangsu Higher Education, the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD), and Central Government Funding of Forestry Science and Technology Demonstration Projects ([2012]TJS1). The authors are grateful to the anonymous reviewers for their valuable suggestions.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Qiang Zhang
    • 1
  • Min Zhang
    • 2
  • Peng Zhou
    • 1
  • Yanming Fang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yonghua Ji
    • 2
  1. 1.Co-Innovation Center for Sustainable Forestry in Southern China, College of Biology and the EnvironmentNanjing Forestry UniversityNanjingChina
  2. 2.Jiangsu Academy of ForestryNanjingChina

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