We investigated the colonization and diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi associated with 24 moss species belonging to 16 families in China. AM fungal structures, i.e. spores, vesicles, hyphal coils (including intracellular hyphae), or intercellular nonseptate hyphae, were found in 21 moss species. AM fungal structures (vesicles, hyphal coils, and intercellular nonseptate hyphae) were present in tissues of 14 moss species, and spores and nonseptate hyphae on the surface of gametophytes occurred in 15 species. AM fungal structures were present in 11 of the 12 saxicolous moss species and in six of the ten terricolous moss species, but absent in two epixylous moss species. AM fungal structures were only observed in moss stem and leaf tissues, but not in rhizoids. A total of 15 AM fungal taxa were isolated based on trap culture with clover, using 13 moss species as inocula. Of these AM fungi, 11 belonged to Glomus, two to Acaulospora, one to Gigaspora, and one to Paraglomus. Our results suggest that AM fungal structures commonly occur in most mosses and that diverse AM fungi, particularly Glomus species, are associated with mosses.
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