Vol. 118 No. 1 (2024)
Research Papers

Effect of watering regime and mycorrhizal inoculation on the growth of Baobab (Adansonia digitata)

Oluwaseyi Ezekiel
Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State
Juliet Atinuke Yisau
Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria
Adegboyega Michael Aduraola
Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria

Published 2024-06-28


  • Adansonia digitata,
  • watering regime,
  • mycorrhizal Inoculation,
  • growth parameters

How to Cite

Ezekiel, O., Yisau, J. A., & Aduraola, A. M. (2024). Effect of watering regime and mycorrhizal inoculation on the growth of Baobab (Adansonia digitata). Journal of Agriculture and Environment for International Development (JAEID), 118(1), 5–18. https://doi.org/10.36253/jaeid-12082


This study was carried out to investigate the effect of watering regime and mycorrhizal inoculation on the growth of Adansonia digitata L. seedlings. Seedlings were inoculated with ectomycorrhizae (M0), endomycorrrhizae (M1), non-inoculated (M2) and subjected to three levels of watering; daily (W0), every other day (W1) and once a week at pot capacity (W2). The experimental design used was split plot experiment where mycorrhizal inoculation was the main plot treatment while watering regime was the subplot treatment. Nine experimental treatments were arranged in a 3×3 factorial experimental design and replicated 5 times. Morphological parameters such as the leaf number, collar diameter, shoot height, shoot weight, root weight as well as physiological parameters such as dry weight, fresh weight, and relative water content were measured. Data obtained were taken fortnightly for a period of 12 weeks and subjected to one-way analysis of variance. The significant mean values were compared and separated using Duncan Multiple Range Test. The result indicated that shoot height (9.13 ± 8.39 cm) was significantly different (p>0.05) when watered once a week. There was no significant difference in seedling relative water content among the treatments. The study suggests that the seedling growth of Adansonia digitata could be enhanced by ectomycorrhizal inoculation and daily watering.


  1. Abubakar, S. (2002). Development of irrigation system in Sokoto (case study of Goronyo Dam) (Master's thesis). Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
  2. Adanson, M. (1771). Description of a tree of a new genus called Baobab observed in Senegal. History Royal Scientific Academy, 77-85, 218-243.
  3. Agele, S. O., Osaigbovo, A. U., Ogedegbe, S. A., & Nwawe, A. K. (2016). Effects of watering regime, organic manuring and mycorrhizal inoculation on the growth and development of Shea butter (Vitellaria paradoxa C. F. Gaertn) seedlings. International Journal of Agricultural Policy and Research, 4(3), 35-45. Retrieved from: https://journalissues.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Agele-et-al.pdf. Accessed on: September 23, 2019.
  4. Agele, S. O., Aiyelari, P., & Friday, C. (2017). Effects of shading, irrigation and mycorrhizal inoculation on growth and development of oil palm Elaeis guin-eensis Jacq.(Magnoliophyta: Arecaceae) seedlings in the nursery. Brazilian Journal of Biological Sciences, 4(7), 113-126. https://doi.org/10.21472/bjbs.040712
  5. Allen, M. F., Swenson, W., Querejeta, J. I., Egerton¬Warburton, L. M., & Treseder, K. K. (2003). Ecology of mycorrhizae: a conceptual framework for complex interactions among plants and fungi. Annual Review of Phytopathology, 41, 271–303.
  6. Amaranthus, M., & Steinfeld, D. (2005). Arbuscular mycorrhizal inoculation fol-lowing biocide treatment improves Calocedrus decurrens survival and growth in nursery and outplanting sites. In R. K. Dumroese, L. E. Riley, & T. D. Landis (Eds.), National proceedings: Forest and Conservation Nursery Asso-ciations–2004 (pp. 103–108). Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS¬P¬35. Fort Collins, CO: USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station.
  7. Agele, S. O., Aiyelare, P., & Friday, C. (2017). Effects of shading, irrigation and mycorrhizal inoculation on growth and development of oil palm Elaeis guin-eensis Jacq. (Magnoliophyta: Arecaceae) seedlings in the nursery. Brazilian Journal of Biological Sciences, 4(7), 113-126.
  8. Antunes, P. M., Schneider, K., Hillis, D., & Klironomos, J. N. (2007). Can the ar-buscular mycorrhizal fungus Glomusintraradices actively mobilize Phospho-rus from rock phosphates? Pedobiologia, 51, 281-286.
  9. Assogbadjo, A. E., Glèlè Kakaï, R., Chadare, F. J., Thomson, L., Kyndt, T., Sinsin, B., & Van Damme, P. (2008). Folk classification, perception and preference of baobab products in West Africa: Consequences for species conservation and improvement. Economic Botany, 62, 74-82.
  10. Assogbadjo, A. E. (2006). Importance socio-économique et étude de la variabilité écologique, morphologique, génétique et biochimique du baobab (Adansonia digitata L.) au Bénin. Thèse de doctorat. Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, Ghent University, Belgium, 213 p.
  11. Assogbadjo, A. E., Glèlè Kakaï, R., Edon, S., Kyndt, T., & Sinsin, B. (2010). Natu-ral variation in fruit characteristics, seed germination and seedling growth of Adansonia digitata L. in Benin. New Forests, 41(1), 113-125. https://doi.org/10.1093/jxb/ers095
  12. Awotoye, O. O., Atayese, M. O., Osonubi, O., Mulongoy, K., & Okali, D. U. V. (1992). Response of some tropical nitrogen-fixing woody legumes to drought and inoculation with mycorrhiza. In K. Mulongoy, M. Gueye, & D. S. C. Spencer (Eds.), Biological Nitrogen fixation and sustainability of Tropi-cal Agriculture (pp. 67-77). New York: Wiley and Sons.
  13. Bosch, C. H., Sié, K., & Asafa, B. A. (2004). Adansonia digitata L. Record from Protabase. In G. J. H. Grubben & O. A. Denton (Eds.), Plant resources of tropical Africa. Wageningen.
  14. Brundrett, M. C. (2009). Mycorrhizal associations and other means of nutrition of vascular plants: Understanding the global diversity of host plants by resolv-ing conflicting information and developing reliable means of diagnosis. Plant and Soil, 320(1–2), 37–77. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11104-008-9877-9
  15. Buchmann, C., Prehsler, S., Hartl, A., & Vogl, C. R. (2010). The importance of ba-obab (Adansonia digitata L.) in rural West African subsistence—Suggestion of a cautionary approach to international market export of baobab fruits. Ecology of Food and Nutrition, 49, 145–172.
  16. Chadare, F., Linnemann, A., Hounhouigan, J., Nout, M., & Van Boekel, M. (2009). Baobab fruit products: A review on their composition and nutritional value. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 49, 254–274.
  17. Codjia, J. T. C., Fonton, B. K., Assogbadjo, A. E., & Ekue, M. R. M. (2001). Le Baobab (Adansonia digitata L.). Une Espèce à Usage Multiple au Bénin. Ce-codi, CBDD, Veco, SNV, FSA.
  18. Corkidi, L., Evans, M., & Bohn, J. (2008). An introduction to propagation of ar-buscular mycorrhizal fungi. Native Plants Journal, 9, 29-30.
  19. Corrêa, A., Strasser, R. J., & Martins¬Loução, M. A. (2006). Are mycorrhiza always beneficial? Plant and Soil, 279, 65–73.
  20. De Caluwé, E., De Smedt, S., Assogbadjo, A. E., Samson, R., Sinsin, B., & Van Damme, P. (2009). Ethnic differences in use value and use patterns of bao-bab (Adansonia digitata L.) in northern Benin. African Journal of Ecology, 47, 433-440.
  21. De Caluwé, E., Halamová, K., & Van Damme, P. (2009). Baobab (Adansonia digi-tata L.): A review of traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacology. In H. Rodolfo, J. E. Simon, & C.-T. Ho (Eds.), African natural plant products: New discoveries and challenges in chemistry and quality. Oxford University Press, USA, pp. 51–84.
  22. De Caluwé, E., Halamová, K., & Van Damme, P. (2010). Baobab (Adansonia digi-tata L.): A review of traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacology. Af-rika Focus, 23, 11-51.
  23. Dhillion, S. S., & Gustad, G. (2004). Local management practices influence the via-bility of the baobab (Adansonia digitata L.) in different land use types, Cinzana, Mali. Agriculture Ecosystems and Environment, 101, 85-101.
  24. Dudhane, M., Borde, M., & Jite, P. K. (2011). Changes in antioxidant activity in Gmelina arborea (Verbenaceae) inoculated with Glomus fasciculatum under drought stress. Archives Phytopath Plant Protect, 44(2), 113-126.
  25. Diop, A. G., Saho, M., Dornier, M., Cisse, M., & Reynes, M. (2005). Le baobab Africain (Adansonia digitata L.): Principales caracteristiques et utilisations. Fruits, 61, 55–69.
  26. Founoune, Hassna, Duponnois, Robin, Bâ, Amadou, & Bouami, Fouad. (2002). Influence of the dual arbuscular endomycorrhizal / ectomycorrhizal symbio-sis on the growth of Acacia holosericea (A. Cunn. ex G. Don) in glasshouse conditions. http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/forest:2001008, 59.
  27. Gbadamosi, A. E. (2014). Effect of watering regimes and water quantity on the ear-ly seedling growth of Picralima nitida (Stapf). Journal of Sustainable Agri-culture Research, 3(2), 35-41.
  28. Gebauer, J., El-Siddig, K., & Ebert, G. (2002). Baobab (Adansonia digitata L.): A review on a multipurpose tree with promising future in Sudan. Gartenbau-wissenschaft, 67, 155–160.
  29. Glew, R. H., Vanderjagt, D. J., Lockett, C., Grivetti, L. E., Smith, G. C., Pastuszyn, A., & Millson, M. (1997). Amino acid, fatty acid, and mineral composition of 24 indigenous plants of Burkina Faso. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, 10, 205–217.
  30. Gruenwald, J., & Galizia, M. D. (2005). Market Brief in the European Union for selected natural ingredients derived from native species. Adansonia Digitata L. Baobab. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). BioTrade Initiative/BioTrade Facilitation Programme (BTFP).
  31. Hartmann, T., College, M., & Lumsden, P. (2005). Responses of different varieties of Lolium perenne to salinity. Annual Conference of the Society for Experi-mental Biology, Lancashire.
  32. Henson, I. E., Harun, M. H., Chang, K. C., & Mohammed, A. T. (2007). Predicting soil water status, evapotranspiration growth and yield of young oil palm in a seasonally dry region of Malaysia. Journal of Oil Palm Research, 19, 398-415.
  33. Byju's Learning. (n.d.). Difference between ectomycorrhizae and endomycorrhizae. Retrieved June 27, 2023, from https://byjus.com/biology/difference-between-ectomycorrhizae-and-endomycorrhizae/
  34. The Great Soviet Encyclopedia. (1970-1979). Water Regime of Plants. Retrieved August 19, 2019, from https://encyclopedia2.thefreedictionary.com/Water+Regime+of+Plants
  35. Ibiremo, O. S., Daniel, M. A., Oloyede, A. A., & Iremiren, G. O. (2011). Growth of coffee seedlings as influenced by arbuscular mycorrhizal inoculation and phosphate fertilizer in two soils in Nigeria. International Research Journal of Plant Science, 2(6), 160-165.
  36. Jalaluddin, M., & Maria Hamid. (2011). Effect of adding inorganic, organic and microbial fertilizers on seed germination and seedling growth of sunflower. Pakistan Journal of Botany, 43(6), 2807-2809.
  37. Jama, B. A., Mohamed, A. M., Mulatya, J., & Njui, A. N. (2008). Comparing the "big five": A framework for the sustainable management of indigenous fruit trees in the drylands of East and Central Africa. Ecological Indicators, 8(2), 170–179.
  38. Jamnadass, R. H., Dawson, I. K., Franzel, S., Leakey, R. R. B., Mithöfer, D., Akinnifesi, F. K., & Tchoundjeu, Z. (2011). Improving livelihoods and nu-trition in sub-Saharan Africa through the promotion of indigenous and exotic fruit production in smallholders’ agroforestry systems: A review. Interna-tional Forestry Review, 13(3), 338-354.
  39. Kaboré, D., Sawadogo-Lingani, H., Diawara, B., Compaoré, C. S., Dicko, M. H., & Jakobsen, M. (2011). A review of baobab (Adansonia digitata) products: Ef-fect of processing techniques, medicinal properties and uses. African Journal of Food Science, 5(16), 833-844.
  40. Kalinganire, A., Uwamariya, A., Koné, B., & Larwanou, M. (2007). Mise en place et gestion de banques alimentaires dans le Sahel. International Council for Research in Agroforestry (ICRAF) Note technique no. 3. Nairobi: World Ag-roforestry Centre.
  41. Kamatou, G. P. P., Vermaak, I., & Viljoen, A. M. (2011). An updated review of Adansonia digitata: A commercially important African tree. South African Journal of Botany, 77, 908-919.
  42. Kim, B. E., Nevitt, T., & Thiele, D. J. (2008). Mechanisms for copper acquisition and regulation. Nature Chemical Biology, 4(2008), 176-185.
  43. Kirkham, M. B. (2014). Introduction. In Principles of Soil and Plant Water Rela-tions (pp. 1–13). doi:10.1016/b978-0-12-420022-7.00001-x.
  44. Ky-Dembele, C., Bayala, J., Savadogo, P., Tigabu, M., Odén, P. C., & Boussim, I. J. (2010). Comparison of growth responses of Khaya senegalensis seedlings and stecklings to four irrigation regimes. Silva Fennica, 44(5), 787–798.
  45. Landis, T. D., & Amaranthus, M. A. (2009). Inoculate with mycorrhizae, rebuild your soil, and help stop global warming. Forest Nursery Notes, 29(1), 13, 16.
  46. Lockett, C. T., Calvert, C. C., & Grivetti, L. E. (2002). Energy and micronutrient composition of dietary and medicinal wild plants consumed during drought. Study of rural Fulani, Northeastern Nigeria. International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition, 51, 195–208.
  47. Mojeremane, W., Motladi, M., Mathowa, T., & Legwaila, G. M. (2015). Effect of different application rates of organic fertilizer on growth, development and yield of Brassica napus L. International Journal of Innovative Research in Science, Engineering and Technology, 4(12), 11680–111688.
  48. Namratha, V., & Sahithi, P. (2015). Baobab: A review about "The Tree of Life". International Journal of Advanced Herbal Science and Technology, 1(1), 20–26. Article ID Med-254.
  49. Oroka, F. O. (2012). Comparative effects of Muniapa solid waste compost and NPK fertilizer on the growth and marketable yield of Celosia argentea. New York Science Journal, 5(10), 34–38.
  50. Oyun, M. B., Adeduntan, S. A., & Suberu, S. U. (2010). Influence of watering re-gimes and mycorrhizae inoculations on the physiology and early growth of Acacia senegal (L.). African Journal of Plant Science, 4(7), 210–216.
  51. Phiri, S., Rao, I. M., Barrios, E., & Singh, B. R. (2003). Plant growth, Mycorrhizal association, nutrient uptake and Phosphorus dynamics in a volcanic ash soil in Colombia as affected by the establishment of Tithonia Diversifolia. Jour-nal of Sustainable Agriculture, 21, 41–49.
  52. Rahul, J., Jain, M. K., Singh, S. P., Kamal, R. K., Anuradha, Naz, A., Gupta, A. K., & Mrityunjay, S. K. (2015). Adansonia digitata L. (baobab): A review of traditional information and taxonomic description. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine, 5(1), 79–84.
  53. Sakio, H. (2005). Effects of flooding on growth of seedlings of woody riparian species. Journal of Forest Research, 10, 341–346.
  54. Sanchez, A. C., Osborne, P. E., & Haq, N. (2010). Identifying the global potential for baobab tree cultivation using ecological niche modelling. Agroforestry Systems, 80, 191–201.
  55. Sesay, A. (2009). Influence of flooding on Bambara groundnut (Vigna subterra-nea L.) germination: Effect of temperature, duration and timing. African Journal of Agricultural Research, 4, 100–106.
  56. Shukla, Y. N., Dubey, S., Jain, S. P., & Kumar, S. (2001). Chemistry, biology and uses of Adansonia digitata—A review. Journal of Medicinal and Aromatic Plant Sciences, 23, 429–434.
  57. Schumann, K., Wittig, R., Thiombiano, A., Becker, U., & Hahn, K. (2010). Impact of land-use type and bark- and leaf-harvesting on population structure and fruit production of the baobab tree (Adansonia digitata L.) in semi-arid sa-vanna, West Africa. Forest Ecology and Management, 260, 2035–2044.
  58. Sidibe, M., & Williams, J. T. (2002). Baobab. Adansonia digitata. Fruits for the Future, 4. International Centre for Underutilised Crops, Southampton, UK.
  59. Smith, S. E., & Read, D. J. (2008). Mycorrhizal Symbiosis (3rd ed.). Academic Press.
  60. Smith, E. S., Facelli, E., Pope, S., & Smith, F. A. (2010). Plant performance in stressful environments: Interpreting new and established knowledge of the roles of arbuscular mycorrhizas. Plant and Soil, 326, 3–20.
  61. Soloviev, P., Niang, T. D., Gaye, A., & Totte, A. (2004). Variabilité des caracteres physico-chimiques des fruits de trois especes ligneuses de cueillette, recoltes au Sénegal: Adansonia digitata, Balanites aegytiaca et Tamarindus indica. Fruits, 59, 109–119.
  62. Stadlmayr, B., Charrondière, U. R., Eisenwagen, S., Jamnadass, R., & Kehlenbeck, K. (2013). Nutrient composition of selected indigenous fruits from sub-Saharan Africa. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, 93(11), 2627–2636.
  63. Tedersoo, L., & Bahram, M. (2019). Mycorrhizal types differ in ecophysiology and alter plant nutrition and soil processes. Biological Reviews, 94(5), 1857–1880. https://doi.org/10.1111/brv.12538
  64. Tedersoo, L., Bahram, M., Põlme, S., Kõljalg, U., Yorou, N. S., Wijesundera, R., ... Abarenkov, K. (2014). Global diversity and geography of soil fungi. Science, 346(6213), 1256688. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1256688
  65. Teklehaimanot, Z. (2008). The Role of Indigenous Fruit Trees in Sustainable Dry-land Agriculture in Eastern Africa. In F. K. Akinnifesi, R. R. B. Leaky, O. C. Ajayi, G. Silesh, Z. Tchoundjeu, P. Matakala, & F. R. Kwesiga (Eds.), Indig-enous Fruit Trees in the Tropics: Domestication, Utilization and Commerciali-zation (pp. 107–116). Columns Design Ltd, Reading, UK.
  66. Teste, F. P., Veneklaas, E. J., Dixon, K. W., & Lambers, H. (2014). Complemen-tary plant nutrient-acquisition strategies promote growth of neighbor species. Functional Ecology, 28(4), 819–828. https://doi.org/10.1111/1365-2435.12270
  67. United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). (2005). Mar-ket brief in the European union for selected natural ingredients derived from native species (Adansonia digitata L. Baobab). Retrieved from: http://www.biotrade.org/ResourcesPublications/biotradebrief-baobab.pdf
  68. Vandoorne, B., Mathieu, A. S., Van den Ende, W., Vergauwen, R., Perilleux, C., Javaux, M., & Lutt, S. (2012). Journal of Experimental Botany, 63(12), 4359-4373.
  69. Veihmeyer, F. J., & Hendrickson, A. H. (1927). Soil-moisture conditions in rela-tion to plant growth. Plant Physiology, 2(1), 71–82.
  70. Venter, S. M., & Witkowski, E. T. F. (2013). Where are the young baobabs? Fac-tors affecting regeneration of Adansonia digitata L. in a communally man-aged region of southern Africa. Journal of Arid Environments, 92, 1-13.
  71. Vermaak, I., Kamatou, G. P. P., Komane-Mofokeng, B., Viljoen, A. M., & Beckett, K. (2011). African seed oils of commercial importance — cosmetic applica-tions. South African Journal of Botany, 16, 41.
  72. Watson, R. (2007). The African Baobab. Cape Town: Struik Publishers.
  73. Watt, J. M., & Breyer-Brandwijk, M. G. (1962). The medicinal and poisonous plants of Southern and Eastern Africa (2nd ed.). Edinburgh: E & S. Living-stone.
  74. Wickens, G. E. (1982). The baobab: Africa's upside-down tree. Kew Bulletin, 37, 171–202.
  75. Wickens, G. E., & Lowe, P. (2008). The baobabs: Pachycauls of Africa, Madagas-car, and Australia. Springer.
  76. Wu, Q. S., Zou, Y. N., & He, X. H. (2010). Contributions of arbuscular mycorrhi-zal fungi to growth, photosynthesis, root morphology and ionic balance of citrus seedlings under salt stress. Acta Physiologiae Plantarum, 32, 297-304.
  77. Wuebker, E. F., Mullen, R. E., & Koehler, K. (2001). Flooding and temperature ef-fects on soybean germination. Crop Science, 41, 1857-1861. https://doi.org/10.2135/cropsci2001.1857
  78. Science, 41, 1857-1861. https://doi.org/10.2135/cropsci2001.1857
  79. Yuan, L., Huang, J., Li, X., et al. (2004). Biological mobilization of potassium from clay minerals by ectomycorrhizal fungi and eucalypt seedling roots. Plant and Soil, 262, 351–361. https://doi.org/10.1023/B:PLSO.0000037055.67646.97
  80. Zahra’u, B., Mohammed, A. S., Ghazali, H.M., & Karim, R. (2014). Baobab Tree (Adansonia digitata L) Parts: Nutrition, Applications in Food and Uses in Ethno-medicine – A Review. Annals of Nutritional Disorder and Therapy, 1(3), 101