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Old June 2, 2012   #1
Atomic Garden
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Default Mycorrhizae..can I get more bang for my $$$?

I have asked a few places and I seem to get the same answer. Some version of- I have never thought of that. I currently pay a lot more than I would like to for these products. I started with the liquid. I then read the powder label and it seemed to have more types of beneficial bacteria in it. I mentioned it to my Wife and the next day I get home from work and she had bought me a big tub of it(I think she is awesome! I originally thought she did it because she loves me. I now think she just wants a gazillion cherry tomatoes...hmmm)I now have both. Great, I am excited and rotate between the two. Doesn't change the fact this stuff is pretty expensive for the amount you get. My question is can you increase the amount you get? I have been using compost or worm tea and I know the reason you let it bubble for hours on end is to let the bacteria and fungi grow. If I add mycorrhizae to a bucket with molasses or some other food source can I turn a few cc's into a few gallons?
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Old June 2, 2012   #2
amideutch
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Never really looked into it. I can get MycoGrow soluble for $5.95 for an ounce which is enough for over 100 plants. Ami

http://www.fungi.com/product-detail/...uble-1-oz.html
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Old June 2, 2012   #3
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You can't grow mycorrhizae in compost tea. They are species of fungi and the spores need to be near the roots of a living host plant before they will hatch, attach to a root, grow and reproduce.
That is how Mycorrhizal innoculants are produced commercially, they are grown on plant roots, harvested and the propagules are separated. Propagules are viable spores and mycelium (fragments of mycorrhizal roots)
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Old June 2, 2012   #4
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Here's a good reference for what RayR stated:

http://www.invam.caf.wvu.edu/methods...zae/hyphae.htm
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Old July 11, 2013   #5
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Here's a good reference for what RayR stated:

http://www.invam.caf.wvu.edu/methods...zae/hyphae.htm
After exploring that incredibly interesting website again, and especially reading how they deal with mycorrhizal spores.. I'm finding it hard to believe that any of the products commonly sold have significant viability - at least for the mycorrhizal fungi. I had no idea they were so delicate.
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Old June 2, 2012   #6
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That's an interesting page Randall, the way the hyphae aggregate in the water reminds me of another benefit that mycorrhizae give to improved soil structure. The glomalin protein that they excrete causes soil particles to aggregate into small clumps, improving drainage and aeration. A definite plus for heavy clay soils. There are other benefits of glomalin which you can read about here.
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Old June 2, 2012   #7
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that's a great page. bookmarked!
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Old June 2, 2012   #8
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Both are excellent references. Ami
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Old June 2, 2012   #9
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Like Ami said, the idea is that once a plant is given that bath of Myco at transplant time, they will never need it again, as it should live and grow as long as your plant does. While it is easy to say that, it is impossible to say if you soil might already have them, as many native soils already do. I know that I am currently running a trial of 16 bush bean plants, 8 with and 8 without Myco, though the brand I am using is Garden-ville. We made our first harvest today, and there is NO difference between them. Maybe my soil already had some that were dormant, maybe the Garden-ville brand is junk, or maybe they don't make a big difference for bush beans grown in healthy soil. There are a lot of questions there and it could take a few years to figure it all out.
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Old June 14, 2013   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eltex View Post
Like Ami said, the idea is that once a plant is given that bath of Myco at transplant time, they will never need it again, as it should live and grow as long as your plant does. While it is easy to say that, it is impossible to say if you soil might already have them, as many native soils already do. I know that I am currently running a trial of 16 bush bean plants, 8 with and 8 without Myco, though the brand I am using is Garden-ville. We made our first harvest today, and there is NO difference between them. Maybe my soil already had some that were dormant, maybe the Garden-ville brand is junk, or maybe they don't make a big difference for bush beans grown in healthy soil. There are a lot of questions there and it could take a few years to figure it all out.
There are other factors to consider. How long have you been using organic fertilizers? Strong chemical fertilizers and some soil amendments can kill fungi. Also, since the purpose of using Myco is to effectively extend the root system, by up to a factor of 20, if you are growing in containers it may not make any difference at all.
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Old June 15, 2013   #11
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It does. The research shows that in containers, the combination of slow release inorganic fertilizers, or weak water soluble "fertigation" with mycorrhizal fungi leads to increased size and yield. In particular it helps deal with high soil temps so common to container gardening, presumably by increasing the ability of the plant to take up water for evaporative cooling. But it also helps deal with the other various stresses we place on our plants (like transplanting, disease, insects.. etc.)

I can link some of the papers if you like, just have to search a little.

Most of this research was done in the context of nursery growers, and was particularly concerned with economic efficiency.
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Old June 15, 2013   #12
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Originally Posted by greentiger87 View Post
It does. The research shows that in containers, the combination of slow release inorganic fertilizers, or weak water soluble "fertigation" with mycorrhizal fungi leads to increased size and yield. In particular it helps deal with high soil temps so common to container gardening, presumably by increasing the ability of the plant to take up water for evaporative cooling. But it also helps deal with the other various stresses we place on our plants (like transplanting, disease, insects.. etc.)

I can link some of the papers if you like, just have to search a little.

Most of this research was done in the context of nursery growers, and was particularly concerned with economic efficiency.
If you wouldn't mind linking the papers, I would appreciate it. I'm thinking of adding some containers next year and how I implement them may be determined by what I can learn.

The original post said that Mycorrhizae made no difference and I was looking for reasons why this might have been so.

Thanks,

Russel
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Old June 15, 2013   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Master_Gardener View Post
If you wouldn't mind linking the papers, I would appreciate it. I'm thinking of adding some containers next year and how I implement them may be determined by what I can learn.

The original post said that Mycorrhizae made no difference and I was looking for reasons why this might have been so.

Thanks,

Russel
One possible reason is most Arbuscular Mycorrhizae are host plant family specific. A good product will have a few strains so that the best symbiotic relationship pair can work for most crop species OR will say it is specifically for tomatoes or whatever.

Of course I also agree with the other posters here on the other possible reasons.
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Old June 2, 2012   #14
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I remember reading somewhere that Glomus mosseae was the most effective species of mycorrhizae at colonizing bean plants, other species didn't colonize as well or at all and didn't make much difference in growth or yield. It's a common workhorse species in most myco inocculants, but it might already be native to your soil for all we know. I don't know what variety of species are in Garden-ville's innoculant.
Other than mycorrhizae, Trichoderma fungi and the Nitrogen fixing Rhizobium bacteria species that colonize legume roots are highly beneficial to bean plants.
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Old June 13, 2013   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayR View Post
I remember reading somewhere that Glomus mosseae was the most effective species of mycorrhizae at colonizing bean plants, other species didn't colonize as well or at all and didn't make much difference in growth or yield. It's a common workhorse species in most myco inocculants, but it might already be native to your soil for all we know. I don't know what variety of species are in Garden-ville's innoculant.
Other than mycorrhizae, Trichoderma fungi and the Nitrogen fixing Rhizobium bacteria species that colonize legume roots are highly beneficial to bean plants.
Some plants will benefit from the inoculation of both Mycorrhizae and Rhizobium. I used both this year.
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