Soil Biology - Microbes: Part III: DIVERSITY


The missing link to a balanced community and a happy plant!

Just like in our local communities, microbial diversity is encouraged in healthy and balanced systems. Certain microbes in a particular culture may simply be there to feed other microbes in the community with the excretion of their metabolites. Over time, depending on what you are feeding and the environmental conditions present, any one individual can become more prolific causing the entire community to become unbalanced. To combat this, you must continually inoculate with a balanced culture to ensure that every individual microbe species present is kept in balance with it’s proper counterpart. 

Referring to the last blog’s example of Pseudomonas, if it becomes dominant in a system because you are loading up on phosphorus with your feedings, then other microbes like Streptomyces cannot take up the prime real estate they need to perform their job properly. This can lead to a domino effect whereby other microbes like Panaebacillus and traditional Bacillus are slowly overtaken. Considering most of these species are selected to suppress disease and the intrusion of harmful bacteria and fungi, the longer that this goes on the more vulnerable the system becomes to problems that will be increasingly more difficult to fend off by natural means. 


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