Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants

, Volume 24, Issue 6, pp 1103–1115 | Cite as

Silicon influences growth and mycorrhizal responsiveness in strawberry plants

  • Roghieh HajibolandEmail author
  • Narges Moradtalab
  • Nasser Aliasgharzad
  • Zarrin Eshaghi
  • Javad Feizy
Research Article


Effect of silicon (Si) on the response of strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa var. Parus) plants to arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF) was studied under growth chamber conditions. Plants were grown in perlite irrigated with nutrient solution without (− Si) or with (+ Si) 3 mmol L−1 Si (~ 84 mg L−1 Si as Na2SiO3) in the absence (− AMF) or presence (+ AMF) of fungus. Dry matter production, root colonization rate, photosynthesis rate and water relation parameters were all improved by both Si and AMF, and the highest amounts were achieved by + Si + AMF treatment. Mycorrhizal effectiveness increased by Si treatment associated with higher Si concentration in the + AMF plants. Leaf concentrations of total soluble and cell wall-bound phenolics were increased by Si accompanied by the enhanced activity of phenylalanine ammonia lyase, but not polyphenol oxidase. Profile of phenolics compound revealed that gallic acid, caffeic acid, epicatechin, chlorogenic acid, ellagic acid and kaempferol increased by both Si and AMF treatments, while p-coumaric acid decreased. In addition to vegetative growth, both treatments improved fruit yield and its quality parameters. Our results showed that Si and AMF acted in a synergistic manner and improved growth and biochemical parameters in strawberry plants. However, the mechanism for Si-mediated increase of mycorrhizal effectiveness is not known, thereby needing further elucidation.


Silicon Mycorrhizal effectiveness Fragaria × ananassa Rhizophagus clarus Rhizophagus intraradices Glomus versiform 



Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus


Cell wall


Phenylalanine ammonia-lyase




Polyphenol oxidase


Relative water content





The authors would like to thank Dr G. Neumann (University of Hohenheim, Germany) for providing facility of Si analysis and Dr H.R. Beheshti (Testa Quality Control Laboratory, North-East Food Industrial Technology and Biotechnology Park, Mashhad, Iran) and Dr M.S. Nabavi (Department of Agriculture, Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran) for their assistance in the HPLC analysis.

Authors’ contribution

RH: Project supervisor, responsible for experimental design, interpretation of results, writer of the manuscript. NM: Cultivation of plants, performing all analyses; NA: Project co-supervisor, providing fungal inoculum, involvement in the writing and correction of the paper; ZE: Providing facility and assistance in the HPLC analysis; JF: Providing facility and assistance in the HPLC analysis.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Prof. H.S. Srivastava Foundation for Science and Society 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center of Excellence for BiodiversityUniversity of TabrizTabrizIslamic Republic of Iran
  2. 2.Department of Plant ScienceUniversity of TabrizTabrizIslamic Republic of Iran
  3. 3.Department of Soil ScienceUniversity of TabrizTabrizIslamic Republic of Iran
  4. 4.Department of AgriculturePayame Noor UniversityTehranIslamic Republic of Iran
  5. 5.Research Institute of Food Science and TechnologyMashhadIslamic Republic of Iran

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