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Mycorrhiza. 2006 Dec;17(1):25-35. Epub 2006 Oct 17.

Which role can arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi play in the facilitation of Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. invasion in France?

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  • 1UMR INRA/ENESAD/UB Biologie et Gestion des Adventices, 21065, Dijon, France.


Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. (common ragweed), an annual invasive plant, was introduced more than 100 years ago from North America to Europe. Like the majority of other invasive plants in Europe, it develops in open, disturbed areas such as fields, wastelands, roadsides, and riverbanks. Recently, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) have been suspected to play a role in some plant invasion processes. As the common ragweed is known to be colonized by AMF in its native range, the intensity of mycorrhizal root colonization was studied in 35 natural populations in eastern France. About 94% of the A. artemisiifolia populations sampled were mycorrhizal. Root colonization levels varied from 1 to 40% depending on the ecological sites, with lower levels for agricultural habitats and higher levels in disturbed sites, such as wastelands or roadsides. A subsequent greenhouse experiment showed positive impacts of AMF on the growth and development of A. artemisiifolia. It is proposed that the spread of this invasive plant species could be facilitated by AMF, underlining the need to integrate symbiotic interactions in future work on invasive plant processes.

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