Rhizosphere microbial community structure at different maize plant growth stages and root locations
The aims of the present work were (1) to determine the influence of plant growth stages on the population size of culturable bacteria and fungi associated with rhizoplane and endo-rhizosphere of maize grown in field and (2) to establish the community structure of total culturable bacteria and fungi. Density, diversity and community structure of culturable rhizoplane and endo-rhizosphere populations at different maize plant growth stages were estimated. Plant development did not have influence on total culturable microflora density but it selectively influenced some bacterial and fungal groups present in the rhizosphere. However, the microbial community structure changed markedly over time. This knowledge is relevant for exploring endophytic rhizobacteria potential in the promotion of plant-growth, protection against pathogens and to detect perturbations in natural agro ecosystems.