Rhizosphere Bacteria

Biofertilizers are inoculants that supply living soil microbes that improve soil fertility, soil tilth, and plant mineral nutrition. These include primarily mycorrhizal fungi and beneficial rhizosphere bacteria. Since fungi and bacteria are living organisms capable of reproduction and self perpetuation, why do we recommend repeat applications of them?

Lebanon Seabaord produces several Roots PHC products that contain beneficial rhizosphere bacteria to promote plant growth. Recently, some of you have encountered researchers who contend that the use of such products is meaningless, since even heavily managed soils have high bacteria counts already, so that application of limited numbers of selected microbes is “like throwing water in the ocean.” How do you respond to this argument?

Many PHC products contain our standard, six-species bacteria package. These bacteria are all BioSafety Level I bacteria, which is the safest level. Bacteria in this level are not typically associated with diseases. Also, these bacteria tend to be quite common in rich soil environments, such as forest soil, and they are have many beneficial effects on soil fertility.