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Trichoderma: Identification and Agricultural Applications
Trichoderma: Identification and Agricultural Applications

"This is the perfect example of applied phytobiome research. Gary Samuels (and others) found that Trichoderma species were important for biocontrol but also an essential component of the phytobiome, interacting at the genomic level between host and Trichoderma. It highlights how phytobiome research translates to agricultural applications. I'm so glad to see this book in print!"
—Mary Palm, USDA, APS Vice President, and APS PRESS Senior Review Editor on this book

This definitive manual on Trichoderma identification and its applications in crop management is valuable to those who seek to use beneficial organisms in plant disease control
or for improving crop performance.

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This is the 'how to' book for Trichoderma, a genus of ecologically important beneficial microorganisms that has been shown to be useful in meeting critical agricultural challenges such as nutrient and mineral uptake and remediation of toxic elements. Expertly written, the authors draw on and translate the experimental literature to explain how to isolate cultures of Trichoderma and how to select, handle, formulate, identify, and register effective strains of Trichoderma species. They clearly describe the process of identifying Trichoderma cultures to species using molecular and classical techniques. Descriptions and illustrations of forty-five species are provided along with a key for their identification and illustrations for each.

The book provides details of isolating Trichoderma, selecting efficacious cultures, maintaining cultures, formulating Trichoderma for application, and applying Trichoderma. This is the first time that such a large number of Trichoderma species has been included in a key. No single source provides so much highly detailed information for identifying Trichoderma and for selecting and applying the selected strains in agriculture. The growing market for organically produced food, combined with an increasing awareness of some of the undesirable effects of chemically based disease control and fertilization demand alternative methods of crop management. Trichoderma is recognized for its potential to reduce use of these chemicals and can be part of an integrated crop management program that leads to certification of an organic agricultural product. This book guides the reader into the use of Trichoderma.

A special section of the manual titled, “Interactions Among Trichoderma Species, Plants, and Their Pathogens: A Primer,” summarizes much of the genomic interaction knowledge from a layman's point of view. This section is important for agriculturalists who want to understand how this beneficial microorganism interacts with the plant and the pathogens. Through this understanding, new applications and advances in crop management techniques will be possible.

This spiral-bound laboratory manual provides plant pathologists, biocontrol researchers, diagnosticians, ecologists, mycologists, and even medical/veterinary diagnosticians with a useful resource for identifying Trichoderma and utilizing Trichoderma attributes in agricultural applications and studies.

Special Features of This Book

  • Full-page illustrations of the morphology of 45 species of Trichoderma
  • A synoptic key to the 45 species
  • Explicit methods for taxonomic studies, including microscopy and culture media
  • Primers for identification and phylogenetic studies of Trichoderma
  • A wide review of the methods used in determining effectiveness in vivo and in vitro for biocontrol and other agricultural applications
  • A wide review of methods of application of Trichoderma in agriculture
  • A review of the literature concerning the interactions among Trichoderma, host plants, and fungal pathogens
  • Shows how to isolate Trichoderma, how to select effective strains, how to maintain strains, how to assay the strains for efficacy in several different systems, and ways to register selected beneficial strains

Trichoderma: Identification and Agricultural Applications

Chapter 1: Introduction

Introduction to the Genus Trichoderma
Biogeography and Host Specificity

Chapter 2: Developing Trichoderma-Based Products for Application in Agriculture

Interactions Among Trichoderma Species, Plants, and Their Pathogens: A Primer
Applying Trichoderma Species in Agriculture

Identify the Problem: Understand the Crop and the Target
Find the Right Culture

Isolating Trichoderma species

Assay for Biological Activity

Considerations in plant bioassays
Assays for mycoparasitism
In planta assays for beneficial effect

Identify the Mode of Action and Ecology
Determine Methods of Formulation and Shelf Life Studies

Selecting a fermentation (liquid, solid-state) method

Preserve Cultures
Register Product

Concluding Remarks

Chapter 3: Applications of Trichoderma Species in the Field and Greenhouse

A Few Comments on Testing
Soil Application of Trichoderma Cultures
Suppressive Soils and Composts
The Use of Trichoderma Species in Soilless and Hydroponic Systems
Seed Treatments

Applying Trichoderma Conidia to Seeds

Topical Applications
Using Trichoderma Species to Enhance Plants Developed by Tissue Culture

Chapter 4: Systematics of the Genus Trichoderma

Trichoderma vs. Gliocladium
Are There Biocontrol Species of Trichoderma?
Identification of Trichoderma Species

Identification of Trichoderma Species Using DNA Sequences
Identification of Trichoderma Species Using Chemical Methods

Biolog FF MicroPlates
MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry

Identification of Trichoderma Species Using Cultures and Morphology

Media and incubation
Macroscopic characters: Characters observed in the petri plate directly or with use of a stereomicroscope
Micromorphology: Characters observed using a compound microscope

Chapter 5: Synoptic Key to Forty-Five Trichoderma Species

Using the Key
Synoptic Key
Trichoderma Species Included in the Synoptic Key

Chapter 6: Trichoderma Species Descriptions

Trichoderma aggressivum
Trichoderma amazonicum
Trichoderma asperellum
Trichoderma atroviride
Trichoderma aureoviride
Trichoderma brevicompactum
Trichoderma capillare
Trichoderma citrinoviride
Trichoderma crassum
Trichoderma deliquescens
Trichoderma effusum
Trichoderma erinaceus
Trichoderma evansii
Trichoderma flagellatum
Trichoderma gamsii
Trichoderma ghanense
Trichoderma hamatum
Trichoderma harzianum
Trichoderma koningii
Trichoderma koningiopsis
Trichoderma lieckfeldtiae
Trichoderma longibrachiatum
Trichoderma longipile
Trichoderma minutisporum
Trichoderma orientale
Trichoderma ovalisporum
Trichoderma paucisporum
Trichoderma pleuroti
Trichoderma pleuroticola
Trichoderma polysporum
Trichoderma pseudokoningii
Trichoderma pubescens
Trichoderma reesei
Trichoderma rossicum
Trichoderma saturnisporopsis
Trichoderma saturnisporum
Trichoderma spirale
Trichoderma stilbohypoxyli
Trichoderma strigosum
Trichoderma stromaticum
Trichoderma tomentosum
Trichoderma velutinum
Trichoderma virens
Trichoderma viride
Trichoderma viridescens

Literature Cited


"This is a useful source of information for mycologists, pathologists, ecologists, and biocontrol researchers. Therefore this should be available in all schools, research laboratories, community and university libraries."
—Fungal Diversity

"To quote a mycology professor who used the book in his class: 'Thanks a million for letting me use the book. It was very useful in class; students isolated several Trichoderma from different substrates and were able to identify them using the keys. The descriptions and illustrations are both excellent... this is a much needed and very useful guide for Trichoderma identification'."
—Mycological Society of America

Publish Date: 2015
Format: 8.5” × 11” spiral-bound softcover
ISBN: 978-0-89054-484-6
Pages: 204
Images: 55 images
Publication Weight: 2 lbs

By Gary J. Samuels and Prakash K. Hebbar

Trichoderma: Identification and Agricultural Applications

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