Effects of nutrition and Bacillus amyloliquefaciens on tomato (Solanum lycopersicum, L.) growing in perlite
AbstractPlant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) are free-living bacteria that, as their name suggests, promote plant growth. However, they can also be of help in the biological control of plant diseases. This study reports the effects of two different commercially available strains of Bacillus amyloliquefaciens (FZB24 and FZB42) on tomato production in open and closed systems in the presence of different amounts of nutrients. Three factors were tested: (1) the type of nutrition system (open or closed), (2) the concentration of the nutrient solution (full or half strength), and (3) the PGPR applied (either B. amyloliquefaciens FZB24 or B. amyloliquefaciens FZB42, or a no-PGPR control). Perlite was used as the growth medium. Variables related to water use efficiency, yield and fruit quality were assessed. The use of half strength nutrient solution was sufficient for full growth in the open system in both spring and autumn seasons. However, the same strength nutrient solution was associated with reduced yields in the closed system during the autumn season. The application of either strain of B. amyloliquefaciens increased the yield of the tomato plants by 8-9% in the open system in the spring, whereas they had an adverse effect on yield in the closed system under half strength nutrient solution conditions during the autumn.
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