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Old May 27, 2009   #16
dice
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PS: A little WWW research indicates that keeping mycorrhizae
alive on cover crop roots over a winter should work pretty well.

I did not find a simple list of which cover crops support
mycorrhizae and which do not, but grains like winter rye,
winter wheat, spring oats, and so on and legumes like vetch,
alfalfa, bell beans, clovers, peas, etc all seem to be mycorrhizae
compatible (mycorrhizae will thrive on their roots).

Buckwheat, while a pretty good early spring or late summer
cover crop, is not a mycorrhizal species, and brassicas
(like mustard, radishes, etc) also do not support mycorrhizae
on their roots.

So, in theory, one could inoculate a garden, grow a winter cover
crop of, say, winter rye and hairy vetch (popular in places with
cold winters that tend to not have nematode problems), and the
mycorrhizae should still be there by the time the next summer's
crop is planted. The same would be true of clovers, winter peas,
oats, and so on in warmer places that need winter cover crops
that are not nematode-friendly.

(Some places need to balance the benefits of mycorrhizae
against the need to repress other pests in the soil, and growing
a mustard or radish cover crop might still be a win if it gets rid
of something that hurts production worse than the lack of
support for mycorrhizae does.)
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Old May 27, 2009   #17
hasshoes
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Thanks for all the info.

Ami. . . I was just trying to figure out how to use myco with a modified Earls Hole Method. I don't know enough yet to start making my own formulas.
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Old May 27, 2009   #18
dice
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You could use rock phosphate instead of bone meal. On paper
the phosphate levels are lower, but mycorrhizae exude
chemicals that break the chemical bonds in phosphate rock,
and they can transfer 6 times as much phosphate into the roots
via their hyphae as the roots themselves can absorb via
diffusion over the same amount of time. (So you don't need as
many roots in direct contact with phosphate in solution to get
the same amount of phosphorus into the plant if the roots are
colonized by mycorrhizae.)

It lasts longer in the soil, too, for years.
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Last edited by dice; May 27, 2009 at 10:20 PM. Reason: clarity
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Old May 28, 2009   #19
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hasshoes, concerning your bonemeal question I posed the question to Thomas G. at T&J Enterprises since the phosphorus issue needed clarification. Here is what he had to say.

If you apply bone meal into your soils so it is not just in a pile on the roots of your plants, bacteria will release the phosphorous slowly and it should work quite well with our BioVam product which contains mycorrhiza fungi and beneficial bacteria. One of the bacteria in BioVam will release the phosphorous from such products as bone meal, hard rock phosphate, and soft rock phosphate. Many people say it takes years to release all the phosphorous in hard rock phosphate, but with BioVam the rules all change. The bacteria in BioVam will release the phosphorous in bone meal and the mycorrhiza in BioVam will bring that phosphorous into your plant roots. BioVam works quite well that way. Just be sure to mix the bone meal into the soil where you are going to place your plants. Don’t leave it in a pile.


This is his reply from my second e-mail requesting further clarification on the phosphorus question per his warning you mentioned that is posted on his site and what bacteria was responsible for releasing the bound phosphate. Here is what he had to say.


When phosphate starts affecting mycorrhiza fungi, then you are looking at quantities of 50-100 ppm or 100 to 200 lbs per acre of available phosphate. The ideal for mycorrhiza fungi is about 37 ppm or 74 lbs per acre of available phosphate. Even though bone meal says 4-12-0 most of the phosphate is not available and won’t pose any problem with mycorrhiza fungi.

Let’s say you had a fertilizer that had high levels of phosphate and it was all available. It’s still possible to use that kind of fertilizer. If we keep the available phosphate at 74 lbs per acre, it doesn’t matter what kind of fertilizer you use. What matters is how much you use. Let’s say the N-P-K of a fertilizer was 28-14-14 and the phosphate was all available and it came in 50 lb bags. The number of pounds per acre we would put down of that fertilizer is 74 / .14 = 528.6 lbs. This would limit the soluble phosphorous to 74 lbs / acre, which is ideal for mycorrhiza fungi. That would be .0121 lbs per square foot (.2 oz) or 12.13 lbs per thousand square feet. As long as you apply the fertilizer properly, according to the 37 ppm limit per acre on available phosphate, you won’t have any complaints from the mycorrhiza fungi. I think you can get up as high as 50 ppm (100 lbs) per acre of available phosphate without any problems.

In BioVam, a number of beneficial bacteria have been added: Athrobacter Globiformis, Azotobacter Chrococcum, Azotobacter Vinelandii, Bacillius Subtillis, Pseudomonas Alcaligenes, Pseudomonas Fluorescens, Pseudomonas Pseudoalcaligenes, and Pseudomonas Putida. I believe it’s Pseudomonas Alcaligenes that will work on bound up forms of phosphate. Not too long ago, the USDA Ag Research Service came out and said Pseudomonas Fluorescens will keep food from spoiling. We discovered that several years ago.

I'll have to do a little research on Earl's Hole method to answer your question. Hope this helps and is not to confusing. Ami
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Old May 28, 2009   #20
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this is all so interesting.

so...another question:
we are talking mostly about annual crops here and i'm wondering about perrenials. i have a lot of fruit trees...stone, citrus, olives and mangoes. on top of that...i'm nursing a sugar maple which is, of course, greatly challenged by the climate here.
would innoculating these trees be beneficial? i'm assuming if it attaches to the roots of persitant trees...then the colonies will also persist. would that be right?
sorry if i'm sounding thick.
steep learning curve here.
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Old May 28, 2009   #21
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Tessa, Here is a couple links on how to innoculate your trees and info for application to other plants. Just make sure your product has ectomycorrhizae as well as endomycorrhizae. Ami

http://www.tandjenterprises.com/treatingtrees.htm

http://www.tandjenterprises.com/howtoapplylinks.htm

Just use your mycorrhizae product where they call for BioVam. He also recommends yearly re-application to increase colonization to maintain a higher level of health in your trees. Ami
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Old May 28, 2009   #22
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thanks folks!
i'm pretty excited now. i ordered the product, it should be here by monday, and then i suppose i'll wait til spring to start the innoculations. will learn all i can in the meantime.
it will be so so cool if this is what makes the big difference in my garden.
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Old May 29, 2009   #23
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Quote:
i'm assuming if it attaches to the roots of persitant trees...then the colonies will also persist. would that be right?
Benefits seem to depend on the particular species of tree.
For example:
http://www.springerlink.com/content/q3080v61757h5w52/

There is a lot of research on the WWW relative
to mycorrhizae in forests and orchards. (Information is probably
easier to find than for annual vegetables and perennials.)

For example:
http://www.anbg.gov.au/fungi/mycorrhiza.html

Try Googling 'mycorrhizae "fruit trees" "Western Australia"'.
You will be amazed at how much information there is on
this subject.





Friends of the Trees recommended granite dust for trees, too.
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Old May 29, 2009   #24
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you are so right! i'm so amazed! usually...it is like living in outter space here...but not on this issue (even tho i've never heard a living soul here mention anything about it before). yay!
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Old May 30, 2009   #25
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For the granite dust, if I remember correctly they were
mixing it into seedling mix or amending fields where they
were starting tree seedlings with it, then noticing how much
better the trees grew over several years. I don't know if
top-dressing it on the soil below mature trees will have
comparable benefits, especially in an arid region where there
is not much rainfall to wash it down into the soil.

If you come across some for free, though, it cannot hurt to
scatter it around under them. Places that make monuments,
headstones, granite countertops, etc usually have piles of
it around that they will gladly let people cart off.

I was amazed myself to see all of the mycorrhizae links.
I presumed that if the search turned up a couple of documents
where some researcher had studied the interaction of
mycorrhizae with some species native to the area or grown
commercially there, that would be unexpectedly lucky.
Apparently there are some researchers at UWA for whom
this is their specific field of focus.
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Old May 31, 2009   #26
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You guys are AWESOME!!!!!!

So much great info here I need to take notes!!!!

Thanks again.
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Old June 2, 2009   #27
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yay! got my myco in the mail today!
it's in a vacuum packed sachet which appears to be resealable. any ideas how long the innoculant will last if i open it and try just a little on the cherry tomatoes that i'm overwintering? absolutely no info on the package. *pout* will have to go back to the website for more exact info.
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Old June 2, 2009   #28
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Tessa, it shelf life is a year at full strength and degrades about 10% a year after that. Ami
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Old June 3, 2009   #29
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thanks ami.
couldn't find that info anywhere.

i doubt i will still have it in a year. i only ordered a 200g bag...and now i see how much i'll need. well...it's a start and will be interesting to see how the treated plants do then.
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Old February 13, 2016   #30
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Thank you ami, for explaining why we should keep the P (phosphorus) low as in NPK, when using mycorrhizae products.
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