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Abstract,  Research institute of Organic agriculture FiBL, 2018

Application of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) is a simple technique for improving the growth of date palms and other tree seedlings (pomegranate, olive, argan) or medicinal shrubs (lavender, rosemary) at nursery stage and to increase their stress tolerance when transplanted to the field. The aim of this technical handbook is to illustrate how inoculates of beneficial soil fungi, the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, can be produced and used on the farm to improve the growth of date palms and other perennial crops pregrown under nursery conditions. Under regular field conditions date palm roots are well colonized by AMF1 and their symbiotic association positively impacts the growth and health of date palms2. AMF can increase water and nutrient uptake of date palms under saline and drought conditions3,4 and enhances their tolerance against Bayoud disease5. Using AMF under nursery conditions promotes the growth of plantlets and offshoots, even without fertilizer addition when using nutrient rich nursery substrates like peat.