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Modern Concepts & Developments in Agronomy

Mycorrhizae Make the Difference by Paul Reed Hepperly and David Douds

  • Open or Close Paul Reed Hepperly*

    University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez, Puerto Rico

    *Corresponding author: Paul Reed Hepperly, University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez, Puerto Rico

Submission: September 21, 2017; Published: January 29, 2018

DOI: 10.31031/MCDA.2018.01.000508

ISSN: 2637-7659
Volume1 Issue2


Mycorrhizal fungi cannot be cultured apart of living plant roots. Found underneath the soil, they work inconspicuously. Because they only grow on living plant roots, they are known as obligate symbionts. This signify their dependence of growing into and from the host of plant roots and divulges there largely beneficial effects on the host plants. Mycorrhizae derives from the Greek myco fungus and rhizae roots. About 80% of all land plants depend on these fungi to find and procure of water and nutrients for plant growth and development. The fungal roots or mycorrhizal associations are underground but represent a massive web of opportunity.

Mycorrhizal evolution appearance coincides with land plant development over 400 million years ago (Remey 1990). Scientists speculate mycorrhizae were needed in order to allow plants to adapt to periodically dry land surfaces. Leonardo da Vincionce remarked, “in order to be a successful farmer one must know the nature of the soil”. Even today in the age of hydroponics, most of our food is grown from field on a soil medium, over 98%. Researchers suggest that less than 1 of 20 soil microorganisms have ever been identified and cultured. Considering this startling statistic, soil microbiology still represents a largely unchartered vast frontier filled with promise and potential.

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