International Journal of Innovative Research in Science, Engineering and Technology

Agricultural Applications Of Fungi

Healthy soil is not only a fundamental necessity for increased food production, but may also be a means of curbing atmospheric greenhouse gas (GHG). A significant contributor to soil health is the presence of soil fungi and the highly beneficial relationship that they can establish with host plants. Science has a good understanding of this relationship but, in agricultural systems, it has been often ignored in favour of reliance upon the application of fertilisers. This situation is changing, however, and a number of primary producers are inoculating crop seed with fungi spores to increase yields and improve soil condition. Early observations of plant vigour, crop yield and cost reduction appear positive, but these findings need to be scientifically confirmed. This potential notwithstanding, the most important characteristic of soil fungi may be its capacity to influence GHG-induced climate change.In many areas, the amount of soil fungi has been severely depleted due to certain farming practices, such as extended periods of tillage, long periods of fallow and soil exposure to industrial substances. As a result, plants have become more dependent upon added fertilisers and have become less efficient at using them.

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