Tag Archives: Bacteria

Crop Rotation has Effect on Soil Bacteria

Crop Rotation has Effect on Soil Bacteria

Crop rotation is a well known way to improve soils. This article discusses the relationship between crop rotation and soil bacteria. In summary, soils that are rotated have a more diverse, heather population of soil bacteria.

The complete article on soil bacteria is below.

 

Crop Rotation has Effect on Soil Bacteria

Crop rotation has been used since Roman times to improve plant nutrition and to control the spread of disease. A new study to be published in Nature’s The ISME Journal reveals the profound effect it has on enriching soil with bacteria, fungi and protozoa.

“Changing the crop species massively changes the content of microbes in the soil, which in turn helps the plant to acquire nutrients, regulate growth and protect itself against pests and diseases, boosting yield,” says Prof. Philip Poole from the John Innes Centre.

Soil was collected from a field near Norwich and planted with wheat, oats and peas. After growing wheat, it remained largely unchanged and the microbes in it were mostly bacteria. However, growing oat and pea in the same sample caused a huge shift towards protozoa and nematode worms. Soil grown with peas was highly enriched for fungi.

“The soil around the roots was similar before and after growing wheat, but peas and oats re-set of the diversity of microbes,” says Poole.

All organisms on our planet can be divided between prokaryotes (which include bacteria) and eukaryotes (which include humans, plants and animals as well as fungi). After only four weeks of growth, the soil surrounding wheat contained about three percent eukaryotes. This went up to 12-15 percent for oat and pea. The change of balance is likely to be even more marked in the field where crops are grown for months rather than weeks.

Analysis has previously relied on amplifying DNA samples. This limits scientists to analyzing one taxonomic group at a time such as bacteria. It also means that everything present in that group is analyzed rather than what is playing an active role. Every gram of soil contains over 50,000 species of bacteria so the task is enormous.

There are relatively fewer actively expressed genes, or RNA. It is now possible to sequence RNA across kingdoms so a full snapshot can be taken of the active bacteria, fungi, protozoa and other microbes in the soil. The research was carried out in collaboration with the Univ. of East Anglia and The Genome Analysis Centre on Norwich Research Park.

“By sequencing RNA, we can look at the big picture of active microbes in the soil,” says PhD student Tom Turner from the John Innes Centre.

“This also allows us to work out what they are doing there, including how they might be helping the plants out.”

“Our work helps explain the experience of farmers in the field,” says Poole.

“The best seed needs to be combined with the best agronomic practices to get the full potential benefits.”

“While continued planting of one species in monoculture pulls the soil in one direction, rotating to a different one benefits soil health.”

Seeds can be inoculated with bacteria before planting out, just like humans taking a dose of friendly bacteria. But this does not achieve the diversity or quantity of microbes found in this study.

The scientists also grew an oat variety unable to produce normal levels of avenacin, a compound that protects roots from fungal pathogens. They expected the soil to contain higher levels of fungi as a result, but instead found it contained a greater diversity of other eukaryotes such as protozoa.

The findings of the study could be used to develop plant varieties that encourage beneficial microbes in the soil. John Innes Centre scientists are already investigating the possibility of engineering cereal crops able to associate with the nitrogen-fixing bacteria normally associated with peas.

“Small changes in plant genotype can have complex and unexpected effects on soil microbes surrounding the roots,” says Poole. “Scientists, breeders and farmers can make the most of these effects not only with what they grow but how they grow it.”

The research was made possible with funding from the Earth and Life Systems Alliance at the Univ. of East Anglia and from the core strategic grant to the John Innes Centre from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC).

Specific Plant Benefits Provided by Beneficial Soil Bacteria

 Beneficial Soil Bacteria

Beneficial soil bacteria cause a number of specific plant benefits. These benefits include; larger, healthier roots, nutrient processing, and secretion of plant growth regulating substances. This post will discuss each of these plant benefits in more detail.

Beneficial Soil Bacteria Help grow Larger, Healthier Roots

There are a number of bacteria that help promote plant growth and they are sometimes beneficial soil bacteriacalled Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria (PGBR). PGBR are defined as rhizospere inhabiting bacteria that have a positive effect on plant growth and plant health. There are several genera that are considered PGPR including, Bacillus, Azospirillum, and Pseudomonas.

Beneficial soil bacteria, such as Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus megaterium, produce a class of chemicals called cytokinins. These cytokinins impact roots by overproduction of root hairs and and lateral roots. This, in turn, provides the plant with an increased ability to take up water and nutrients. So, as expected, a larger healthier root system provides for a healthier plant.

Enhanced Nutrient Processing

Bacteria process a wide variety of chemicals. Often times taking in inorganic compounds and metabolizing them into organic compounds. The bacteria need phosphate for DNA and RNA synthesis and for production of ATP. The benefit to the plant of this processing is the conversion of the phosphate from an insoluble form to a soluble one. Since insoluble phosphate is inaccessible to the plant, this processing by bacteria is invaluable to the plant.

Bacteria Produce and Secrete plant Growth Regulating Compounds

Along with the cytokinins, mentioned earlier, bacteria produce a number of beneficial growth compounds  that convey a plant benefit. These include plant hormones (sometimes called phytohormones) and  auxins. Together phytohormones, cytokinins, and auxins regulate plant growth, root size, and fruit formation. Ultimately, its the beneficial bacteria that either produce these compounds or induce the plant to produce these compounds.

Custom Biologicals manufactures a wide variety of biological products for use in environmental applications. Our agricultural products include Custom B5, a blend of 5 beneficial soil bacteria that convey the specific plant benefits mentioned above. Contact Custom for more information. 

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria

 

Great review article about plant growth promoting bacteria. The link, citation, and author are below. The author believes, as I do, that in the not to distant future, plant growth promoting bacteria, PGPB, will begin to replace chemicals used in agriculture, horticulture,

plant growth promoting bacteria

Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria

environmental cleanup strategies, and even in home gardening. This change will not be a one size fits all solution, and no doubt some new technologies and application strategies will need to be employed.

Some of the key points:

  • In healthy soils, there are 108 to 10bacteria per gram but in stressed soils this number greatly decreases to as low as 104 bacteria per gram.
  • A number of different bacterial species are currently used in agriculture; however plant growth promoting bacteria are only used on a small fraction of available crops.
  • Bacteria are used for:
    • Nitrogen fixation
    • Phosphate Solubilization
    • Sequestering Iron
    • Producing Phytohormones
    • Producing Gibberellins,  Cytokinins,  Indoleacetic Acid, and Etylene
  • Bacteria affect plants in indirect ways like through competitive exclusion, and modulating the effects of stress.

The conclusion of the article is that the use of bacteria in agriculture has come of age. Taking advantage of microbe-plant interactions will be the future of agriculture. Additional studies will be needed, however, the commercial use of plant growth promoting bacteria will be more prevalent in the coming years.

 

 

Scientifica
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 963401, 15 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.6064/2012/963401
Review Article

Plant Growth-Promoting Bacteria: Mechanisms and Applications

Bernard R. Glick

http://www.hindawi.com/journals/scientifica/2012/963401/

 

Custom Biologicals, Inc.  manufactures a number of microbial products with plant growth promoting bacteria (PBPG). These biofertilizers contain both beneficial soil bacteria and beneficial Trichoderma fungi. Distributor inquires, both domestic and international are always welcome. Private formulations and protected areas are available. Contact Custom at (561) 797-3008 or via email at Bill@Custombio.biz.

 

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Biota Green – Probiotic for Golf Greens

Golf Course Problems

Biota Green

Probiotic for Golf Greens

 

Biota Green™ is an all-natural probiotic for golf greens. It has been specifically formulated for golf course greens.  Biota Green™ contains the

Probiotic for Golf Greens

Biota Green is a Probiotic for Golf Greens

beneficial bacteria and beneficial fungi found in healthy golf greens.

Your golf greens lose their natural soil biota to chemicals, heat, cold, drought, and rain. The easiest, most cost effective way to

restore your greens’ natural biotic balance is with Biota Green™.

It’s well known that having a healthy microorganism population will help your greens thrive above and below ground. The result of regular use of Biota Green™ is a healthy microbial layer resulting in a positive and controlled growth response.

Have nature work for you – use Biota Green™ on all of your golf greens.

Biota Green™ is a unique, easy to use effervescent tablet containing enough bacteria and fungi spores (seeds) to treat 1500 square feet of golf green. Unlike any other product you have seen, Biota Green™ is easy to use, has a three year shelf life and requires no special storage.

Biota Green™ is also effective in other high use areas of your golf course like tee boxes. No special equipment is needed to apply Biota Green™. Once dissolved in water, Biota Green™is 100% miscible in water and can be applied through all types of irrigation systems.

One tablet of Biota Green will treat 1/4 acre of golf green or golf tee box.

Biota Green

Features and Benefits of Biota Green

  • Restores Biota Balance – Biota Green™ is a probiotic for golf greens.
  • Contains 10 Species of Beneficial Soil Microorganism.
    • 6 species of bacteria
    • 4 species of fungi
  • Digests Thatch and other Organic Material
  • Processes Nutrients making them more soluble and readily available for the grass.
  • Increases Moisture and reduces stress from drought.
  • Replaces Beneficial Organisms killed by chemicals, heat, drought, fire, flood, erosion, cold and frost
  • No special storage requirements  – 3 years shelf life.
  • Biota Greencan be used with most fertilizers, wetting agents, and organics to reduce application time and costs.

Availability:

Biota Green is available in 12 and 18 packs and a case of 100.

Biota Green™ is manufactured and and distributed by Custom Biologicals. Contact Custom for more information at Bill@Custombio.biz or (561) 797-3008.

 

 

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Bio Soil for Plants. Biofertilizers for Plants.

Bio Soil for Plants

Bio Soil refers to the idea that the soil is alive with biological activity, living soil. Bio soils are in fact biological organisms, like beneficial soil bacteria or beneficial soil Trichoderma.

Bacillus megaterium and B. subtilis are bacteria that are useful for plants. Bacteria for plants can be either beneficial for the plant or detrimental to the plant. In this post we’ll talk about beneficial bacteria for plants, specifically beneficial soil bacteria.

It is well known that beneficial plant bacteria play a critical role in supporting and increasing plant growth and plant health. Because of their ability to confer benefits to the plant, it is important that beneficial bacteria adequately colonize the plant’s environment, specifically the plant root system.

Sometimes called Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria, or PGPB, bacteria are a vital link in the food web for plants.

Bio Soil

Custom B5 Contains Bacillus megaterium

Here’s a brief introduction to two key beneficial plant bacteria, Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus megaterium.

Bacillus subtilis

Bacillus subtilis, or B. sub, is a key beneficial plant bacteria. B. subtilis plays a role in replenishing soil nutrients through both the carbon cycle and the nitrogen cycle. To aid the carbon cycle B. subtilis degrades thatch, pectin, cellulose and other organic materials. B. subtilis forms biofilms which are dense populations of organisms. These biofilms provides the plants with preventive colonization, sometimes called competitive inhibition. While beyond the scope of this post, preventative colonization essentially prohibits other microorganisms from forming colonies around the plant roots.

Bacillus megaterium

Another key beneficial plant bacteria is Bacillus megaterium. In addition to some of the benefits conferred by B. subtilis, B. megaterium is known to be a phosphate solubilizing bacteria (PSB). PSBs have several important benefits:

  • They make phosphorus more available to the plant
  • Reduce the need for traditional fertilizer applications
  • Reduce Environmental problems downstream
  • Promote sustainable agriculture.

Beneficial Plant Bacteria – Bio Soil

The use of beneficial plant bacteria, like those above, has a very positive effect on plant growth, root mass, and crop yields. Specifically, beneficial plant bacteria produce plants with better growth response, biomass yield, and nutrient content when compared to plants without these important beneficial soil bacteria.

Custom Biologicals manufactures a wide variety of microbial products including products that contain beneficial plant bacteria and beneficial soil Trichoderma. Contact Custom at (561) 797-3008 or via email at Bill@Custombio.biz.

Bio Soil Enhancers refer to the idea of using biological products or biofertilizers to the soil. Creating a biologicals active soil.

 

 

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What Does it Mean – Living Soils?

Living Soils

What Does it Mean?

Living soils are simply the portion of the soil that is composed of living microorganisms. To have truly health soil the soil must contain a variety of microorganisms. So, healthy soils means far more  than just the absence of disease. Healthy soil means that soil contains all of the necessary microorganisms to create a balanced micro food web for the plants. While plants vary in their need for different microorganisms, the constant factor is the need for a vibrant mix of soil microbiology to have healthy, living soils.

There are three main types of soil microorganisms that we’ll discuss in this post; bacteria, fungi, protozoa.

 

Beneficial Soil Bacteria 

Bacteria are prokaryotic, single celled microorganisms. Bacteria, Living soilsthrough their ability to produce a wide variety of enzymes, are vital for recycling nutrients in the soil. Bacteria produce so many enzymes that they are sometimes thought of as enzyme factories. There are thousands of species of bacteria and they are among the oldest organisms on earth. Ecologically, many bacteria are classified as decomposers. That is organisms that “feed” on dead organisms and recycling their nutrients. Additionally, bacteria bind several compounds to the soil, including nitrogen,  so that they will not leach out of the soil. 

Beneficial Soil Fungi 

Fungi are a form of microorganism that create several benefits to living soils. Fungi tend to hold soil together and thus improve soil structure. Beneficial soil fungi consume some of the harder to digest materials such as the cellulose found in leaves and tree trunks. Fungi can have a symbiotic, mutually beneficial, relationship with plants. This mycorrhizal relationship allows some beneficial fungi to transfer vital nutrients directly to the plant roots. It is important to note that whole many soil fungi are beneficial, there are also disease causing, pathogenic, fungi as well.

Protozoa

Protozoa include a number of microorganisms many of which consume soil bacteria. As a part of the soil micro food web, protozoa consume bacteria releasing the excess nutrients in a soluble form. It is this soluble form of the nutrients that is utilized by the plant roots. All the organisms we’ve discussed, bacteria, fungi, and protozoa, also help build micro air passages that allow air, water, and nutrients to move through the soil to the roots.

So living soils means having a healthy mix of beneficial soil microorganisms. Like most things, balance is the key.

Custom Biologicals is interested in helping you maintain your living soils. Custom GP and Custom B5 contain beneficial soil microorganisms intended to help your plants. Contact Custom for more information.

 

 

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Bacteria as a Soil Treatment

biological soil admendment

Bacteria as a Soil Treatment

Soil treatments have been in the news lately. There have been a large amount of studies that focus on the benefits of using individual bacteria, generally of the genus Bacillus, to increase soil productivity for a wide variety of crops.

Bacillus as a Soil Treatment

A number of Bacillus species are naturally present at low levels in most cultivated soils. However, soils treated with insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, and fertilizers over a number of years have been shown to have a greatly reduced natural

Bacteria as a Soil Treatment

Custom B5 Soil productivity product

population of beneficial soil bacteria. It is known that the harsh chemical treatments kill the bad microorganisms, both bacteria and fungi. Unfortunately, it is now known that these same chemicals are killing off the beneficial bacteria and other beneficial microorganisms as well. Soils that have a depleted level of beneficial microorganisms, usually produce small plants, resulting in smaller crop yield and these plants tend to have more problems with plant disease.

Custom B5

Fortunately, these lost microorganisms can be replaced with Custom B5, a soil productivity product by Custom Biologicals. Custom B5 contains a blend of five specifically selected, all natural bacteria strains of the genus Bacillus. These bacteria have been selected because of their safety and because of their ability to improve soil conditions for plant growth.

Custom B5 contains the following bacteria:

  • Bacillus subtilis including B sub GB03
  • Bacillus laterosporus
  • Bacillus licheniformus
  • Bacillus megaterium
  • Bacillus pumilus 

Benefits of Bacteria as a Soil Treatment

The addition of Custom B5 to soils immediately increases the microorganism population to that of fertile soils. A great benefit  found in soils treated with B5 is a increase in the rate of crop residue decomposition. This is due to the heightened production of enzymes that degrade these crop residues. Enzymes produced degrade compounds such as; cellulose, hemicellulose, chitin, and fungicides.

There are many great benefits of using the beneficial bacteria in Custom B5 and these benefits directly and indirectly effect plant growth. Plants taken from bioaugmented soils are larger, have denser greener leaves, and have a greater root mass. Some of the important growth stimulating factors produced by these beneficial bacteria are:

  • The supply the plant with nitrogen that can be used biologically. In other words, nitrogen that is more readily available to the plants.
  • Beneficial bacteria produce phytohormones (plant growth regulators) including cytokinin, ethylene, gibberellin, auxins, and abscisic acid.
  • Improved processing of inorganic and organic nutrients like:
    • Nitrogen
    • Phosphorus
    • Calcium
    • Copper
    • molybdenum
    • Magnesium
    • Zinc
    • Iron

Microbial products have a number of different names; biofertilizers, soil amendments, soil probiotics.

Custom B5 is unique in the marketplace because it contains five beneficial bacteria in one soil productivity product.

Custom Biologicals is can be contacted at (561) 797-3008 or via email at Bill@Custombio.biz. Distributor and dealer inquires are always welcome.

B. sub bacteria

Bacillus subtilis

B sub GB03