• crop rotation;
  • disease severity;
  • forage and grain legumes;
  • resistance;
  • susceptibility

The consequence of 10 successive monocultural cycles involving different legume species/cultivars on the inoculum potential (IP) of soils naturally infested by Aphanomyces euteiches was investigated under greenhouse conditions. The results showed that the IP of a soil naturally infested by A. euteiches can be significantly modified not only by the non-host or host status of crop species but also by the level of resistance of the cultivar. Susceptible species/cultivars (pea, lentil and susceptible cultivars of vetch and faba bean) are very favourable to pathogen multiplication, and continuous cultivation of each of these increased the IP values of a soil with a moderate initial IP (from 1·9 to 3·5 after 10 cycles). Conversely, non-host species and resistant cultivars of vetch or faba bean contributed to reducing the IP values of soils irrespective of the initial IP (from 1·9 to 0·5 and from 4 to 2, respectively, after 10 cycles). Aphanomyces root rot severity values on the resistant legume species/cultivars were not affected by the successive cultural cycles. This study, which showed that the IP of A. euteiches in soil can be reduced by planting appropriate legume species and cultivars in greenhouse conditions, will be useful for defining better crop successions for legumes.