University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) plant physiologist Ute Albrecht described the use of microbial amendments, specifically biostimulants, at a July 26 seminar in Immokalee. Albrecht works at the UF/IFAS Southwest Florida Research and Education Center, site of the seminar hosted by multi-county citrus Extension agent Mongi Zekri.
“Biostimulants come in a wide range of different products” including beneficial soil bacteria, beneficial fungi, humic substances and seaweed extract, Albrecht says. She says research indicates the biostimulants “have positive effects on plant growth and also on crop yields.” Albrecht is now studying biostimulants for citrus.
“Most of the positive effects (of biostimulants) are visible under stress conditions, which makes a lot of sense because when we already have the plant growing under optimal conditions, it’s unlikely to see an even more enhanced effect,” Albrecht says. “And the key when using these products is to reduce other chemical inputs, not only for better sustainability of the production system, but also to reduce the financial inputs.”
A crowd of approximately 60 attended the seminar on microbials, at which Albrecht was one of the two speakers.
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