Plant health is crucial to achieving the best possible yield and quality with the lowest possible dependence of pesticides. Although the plant root system is poorly visible, roots play an essential role in maintaining plant health.
Roots are the physical foundation of the plant in the soil or substrate, and they take up water, minerals and metabolites to be transported to the leaves, flowers and fruits. Roots also excrete carbohydrates (‘sugars’) and other compounds made in the leaves into the root zone to feed different types of microorganisms such as beneficial bacteria (Bacillus, Pseudomonas) as well as fungi (Trichoderma, Mycorrhiza). These beneficial fungi and bacteria have many functions:
• They form a barrier against root diseases,
• and can even act as a fungicide.
• Some of them are involved in the nutrients cycle,
• or induce resistance in the entire plant.
Together these microorganisms in the root zone – the rhizobiome – form a rich toolbox that can deliver many benefits as long as we treat them right.
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