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Open AccessArticle

Drivers of Ectomycorrhizal Fungal Community Structure Associated with Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica Differ at Regional vs. Local Spatial Scales in Northern China

by Mishan Guo 1,2, Guanglei Gao 1,2,*, Guodong Ding 1,2 and Ying Zhang 1
1
Yanchi Research Station, School of Soil and Water Conservation, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
2
Key Laboratory of State Forestry and Grassland Administration on Soil and Water Conservation, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2020, 11(3), 323; https://doi.org/10.3390/f11030323
Received: 17 January 2020 / Revised: 11 March 2020 / Accepted: 12 March 2020 / Published: 14 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Conservation and Dynamics of Forest Biodiversity)
Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica, a widely planted tree species, is facing long-lasting, unresolved degradation in desertified Northern China. Ectomycorrhizal fungi (EMF) are closely related to the stand status, because they substantially participate in ecological processes of terrestrial forest ecosystems. EMF may be key to solving the introduction recession. Therefore, we performed DNA sequencing of P. sylvestris root samples from plantations and natural forests as control to characterize the EMF from semi-arid and dry sub-humid regions, using ITS Illumina sequencing and conventional soil physicochemical index determination. The results indicated that (1) the dominant EMF genera were Suillus, Rhizopogon, and Wilcoxina in the Hulunbuir, Mu Us, and Horqin Sandy Lands, respectively. Their dominance retained with stand ageing. (2) Plantation EM fungal diversity differs significantly among the three sandy lands and was significantly lower than in natural forest. The diversity varied with stand age, showing distinct trends at the local scale. (3) At the regional scale, the mean annual sunshine times and the soil organic carbon content affect EMF diversity. The community composition and structure were more characterized by temperature and precipitation. At the local scale, besides the soil organic carbon content, the EM fungal community composition and structure were correlated with total nitrogen and phosphorus content (Hulunbuir), the total phosphorus content (Mu Us), and the pH and total soil porosity (Horqin). The EM fungal community composition and structure have the obvious geographical distribution variation; they were strongly correlated with the meteorological elements and soil nutrients at the regional scale. At the local scale, they were jointly driven by stand age and soil properties. This improved information contributes to increasing the understanding of the interaction between EMF and forest ecosystems and guides sustainable forest management of degraded P. sylvestris plantations. View Full-Text
Keywords: ectomycorrhizal fungi; Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica; stand age; sandy land; soil properties ectomycorrhizal fungi; Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica; stand age; sandy land; soil properties
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Guo, M.; Gao, G.; Ding, G.; Zhang, Y. Drivers of Ectomycorrhizal Fungal Community Structure Associated with Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica Differ at Regional vs. Local Spatial Scales in Northern China. Forests 2020, 11, 323.

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