Building Better Soil
The Furrow Magazine April 2011
With the determination of gold miners panning for their fortune, farmers are picking through soil profiles these days—also in search of treasure. Those riches are in the form of worms, mites, nematodes, deep-growing plant roots, aggregated soil structure and any tell-tale signs of bacterial and fungal activity. All those are indications of soil quality, and developing the management strategies that will enhance that quality is a sure way to strike pay dirt.
Unlock the Secrest in the Soil
USDA September 2012
Soil is a living and life-giving substance, without which we would perish.
As world population and food production demands rise, keeping our soil healthy and productive is of paramount importance. So much so that we believe improving the health of our Nation’s soil is one of the most important endeavors of our time.
Glyphosate Affects Soybean Root Exudation and Rhizosphere Microorganisms
United States Department of Agriculture 2013
Soybeans genetically modified (GM) for resistance to the herbicide glyphosate (Roundup®) are planted on more than 85% of the soybean production area in the United States. Although GM soybeans and glyphosate pose little or no human health concerns, their impacts on soil biology and productivity and on the growth and health of the soybean plant itself have received little attention. The important biological processes in the root zone (rhizosphere), including the characteristics of substances released through the soybean root and their subsequent effects on adjacent soil microorganisms, have been largely neglected in environmental assessments of GM soybeans.…
Scientists Say Microbes Create Hardier, Bigger Crops — Without Chemicals
By Clare Leschin-Hoar 2013
Scientists have discovered a tiny new natural friend for farmers that could mean using fewer
agricultural chemicals to grow our food. Ever since Michael Pollan shared the nitty-gritty details of his gut bacteria, a lot of us have been not-so-secretly obsessed with microbes. Supermarket shelves are jammed with products boasting good-for-you probiotics. What if microbes can give plants the same benefits? Considered through the lens of a warming planet with a burgeoning population, that question has scientists buzzing with the possibility.…
In Perspective: The rise of biologicals
Although the last decade has seen the rise in the use of biotechnology and seed traits, the next decade is likely to be focused more on the research and use of biological products.
Up until the past couple of years, the U.S. market has not been interested in researching or using biological products, but that appears to be changing. Major crop protection companies are jumping on the biological bandwagon—in a big way.