Controlled Rhizogenesis and Mycorrhization of Hazelnut (Corylus avellana L.) Cuttings with Black Truffle (Tuber melanosporum Vitt.)
Hazelnut (Corylus avellana L.) is commonly used as mycorrhizal host for Tuber melanosporum Vitt. (black truffle). Black truffle orchards have been established in and outside its natural distribution area, currently also in Chile. Hazelnut can be propagated rapidly by cuttings, which, however, may not easily form mycorrhizal symbiosis under laboratory conditions. We successfully inoculated hazelnut cuttings with T. melanosporum and studied the effects of culture conditions, plant material and inoculum age on rhizogenesis and mycorrhization. Cuttings from sucker shoots showed the highest rooting rate (88.5%). Perlite and vermiculite as substrate increased root length (9.6 cm). Treatment with auxin significantly increased root yield (up to 27 roots per cutting). Larger containers increased the mycorrhization rate (33.6%). Up to 2 year storage of sporal inoculum did not affect mycorrhization. We conclude that root induction in C. avellana cuttings and mycorrhization with black truffle using up to 2-yr-old inoculum, do not present problems when performed under optimized conditions, allowing fast production of plants for commercial and reforestation purposes.