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Mycorrhizae: The Fantastic Fungus

Mary Smith |

I mentioned in my last article The Importance of Living Soil that I've been reading more and more about soil and soil organisms.  I've known about Mycorrhizae for a long time but we've just now added it to Mary's Heirloom Seeds to help YOU grow a bigger, more productive garden.
  From our website,

Why should everyone use mycorrhizae?
Mary's Root Boost Mycorrhizae is Endo Mycorrhizae which is the type that is beneficial to over 80% of plant species including most leafy green plants and vegetables. 

Mycorrhizae is a fungi that has a beneficial relationship with a plants roots. When Mycorrhizal fungi comes into contact with a plants roots it begins to colonize, or multiply, on the roots and begins to spread out into the surrounding soil. These strands of mycorrhizal fungi effectively become an extension of the roots and can increase the absorbtion area of a plants root system by 10 to 1,000 times. This allows the root system a more efficient intake of nutrients and water.  

They are particularly effective for agricultural plants that have high water and nutritional needs.  Over 50,000 University studies have highlighted the benefits of mycorrhizal colonization on the health and yield of plants. 

Benefits Include:
Reduces Drought Stress
Reduces Watering
Reduces Transplant Shock
Increases Yields
Increases Overall Plant Hardiness
Promotes Rooting
Promotes Nutrient Uptake

Here's what I found from the experts

What is Mycorrhizae?

Mycorrhizal fungi include many species of fungi, like mushrooms. They all have long filaments that resemble roots, and they grow near plants with which they can share a beneficial relationship. They seek out plants that have tiny bits of food dripping from their roots. They then attach themselves to the plant and extend their filaments into parts of the surrounding soil that the plant can’t reach.
A plant would soon exhaust its small area of surrounding soil of nutrients, but with the help of mycorrhizal fungi, plants benefit from nutrients and moisture found further from home. In addition, they produce glomalin, a glycoprotein that helps stabilize the soil.
Not all plants respond to mycorrhizae. Vegetable gardeners will notice that their corn and tomatoes thrive when there are mycorrhizal fungi in the soil, while leafy greens, especially members of the brassicas family, show no response. Spinach and beets also resist mycorrhizal fungi. In soil where these resistant plants grow, the mycorrhizal fungi eventually die out.  Source

From Dr. Davies Research Page

Benefits of Mycorrhiza:
·  Enhanced plant efficiency in absorbing water and nutrients from the soil.
·  Reducing fertility and irrigation requirements.
·  Increased drought resistance
·  Increased pathogen resistance/protection.
·  Enhancing plant health and vigor, and minimizing stress.
·  Enhanced seedling growth.
·  Enhanced rooting of cuttings.
·  Enhanced plant transplant establishment.
·  Improved phytoremediation of petroleum and heavy metal contaminated sites.
Advantages of Mycorrhiza:
·  Produce more stress resistant plants during production and for landscape.
·  Potentially less pesticide usage.
·  Plants are more drought and nutrient tolerant in the landscape.
·  Potentially higher transplanting success and faster establishment.
·  Value added: Marketing landscape plants with greater stress tolerance.


 If your garden soil and veggie garden could benefit from the above, Check out Mary's Root Boost now available at Mary's Heirloom Seeds.

Below are some examples we found of studies showing the effects of Mycorrhiza

Potatoes from SYMYC (above)

Plant Roots from Morrill (above)

More plant roots from Of Mycorrhizae (above)



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