Saturday, September 19, 2015

Microbes to the rescue

Feeding the world with plant microbiomes | The Saturday Paper

A short but quite interesting report here on how research into newly discovered plant microbiomes may help increase agricultural output.  For example:

Meanwhile, other bacteria can boost agricultural output. Pseudomonas,
which live in the soil around a plant, make hormones goading roots to
grow. In one trial, inoculating wheat with a cocktail of these bugs over
two years increased yields by more than 30 per cent. Another bacteria, Burkholderia,
has been shown to ramp up rice production. O’Sullivan wants to use
these plant steroids to inspire crops to grow during drought. “There is a
lot of potential here,” she says.

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