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Author Topic: Encouraging root growth?  (Read 7123 times)

mangomandan

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Encouraging root growth?
« on: August 05, 2012, 10:30:27 AM »
Is there anything special I can do to encourage root growth?  Any magic nutrients?
Over the years the jackfruit seeds I planted turned into nice trees, with little care. Unfortunately, the fruit turned out to be really bad.
The grafted jackfruit trees I've planted haven't really thrived. In particular, it seemed that the roots never spread out much into the surrounding soil.

I tried to open up the root ball a bit before planting, maybe not enough though.

nullzero

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2012, 04:06:50 PM »
Is there anything special I can do to encourage root growth?  Any magic nutrients?
Over the years the jackfruit seeds I planted turned into nice trees, with little care. Unfortunately, the fruit turned out to be really bad.
The grafted jackfruit trees I've planted haven't really thrived. In particular, it seemed that the roots never spread out much into the surrounding soil.

I tried to open up the root ball a bit before planting, maybe not enough though.

Try using superoot type containers for the seedlings, I was skeptical they produced good results and roots. After using them myself, I do notice a difference.
Grow mainly fruits, vegetables, and herbs.

fruitlovers

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2012, 05:52:05 PM »
Earthworms, and earthworms castings encourage root growth by aerating and feeding the soil. Adding organic matter in form of lots of mulch encourages earthworms.
Before plopping into the ground you do need to prune the roots so they are not encircled in the pot. BTW sqare pots are better because they discourage this type of root circling in the pots. Square pots are also more space efficient. I don't know why almost all pots are round?
Oscar

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2012, 07:46:37 PM »
I've been a big fan of square pots as well- they help maximize space and decrease root circling.  But nothing beats the super-roots or even better (and cheaper) fabric pots at making a superior, ready-to-explode root system in my experience.

A soak in dilute rooting hormone before planting also helps get things established quickly.

   Kevin

Tropicdude

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2012, 01:09:49 AM »
Use some mycorrhizal fungi on your roots, this will really get them growing and supply nutrients.  there are probably hundreds of videos showing how they benefit roots and plants.   they are easily purchased at your local hydroponic shops, and a little goes a long way.  the best way is to apply it directly to the roots ( powder ) but if your tree is already in the ground, get some water soluble myco and do some drenching,   you want the fungi to touch the roots.   these formulas usually have beneficial bacteria also.

Worm compost is good also. with its humates and other goodies.

Its also important to check Ph, if that is out of whack , your tree will have a problem taking up nutrients.

If your doing heavy pruning and tipping often, give the tree some rest, its during this time that roots grow.
William
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BMc

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2012, 06:45:28 AM »
do you have any of the 'rootbooster' type products? Seaweed tonics are feted around here for having beneficial effects on roots especially. Everyone has a cask of seasol or gogo juice in the shed.

mangomandan

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2012, 10:34:51 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions.     :)      I'll check out the local nurseries and hydroponics stores to see if they carry some of these items.  I want my j-31 to grow big and strong.
I'm puzzled why my area has hydroponics stores, but I never see local produce for sale...........

natsgarden123

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2012, 01:00:54 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions.     :)      I'll check out the local nurseries and hydroponics stores to see if they carry some of these items.  I want my j-31 to grow big and strong.
I'm puzzled why my area has hydroponics stores, but I never see local produce for sale...........

South Florida

fyliu

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2012, 03:24:30 PM »
Water soluble mycorrhizae doesn't sound too effective. Once they're in solution they'll need a constant supply of sugar/cellulose/protein and oxygen to stay alive until they can get to their next sugar source which is the root of the plant. Mushroom liquid cultures can be kept alive in the fridge to slow down metabolism for longer but that's under controlled conditions.

Digging for roots and rubbing the powder into the roots and surrounding soil feels more effective to me.

Tropicdude

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2012, 02:42:09 PM »
Water soluble mycorrhizae doesn't sound too effective. Once they're in solution they'll need a constant supply of sugar/cellulose/protein and oxygen to stay alive until they can get to their next sugar source which is the root of the plant. Mushroom liquid cultures can be kept alive in the fridge to slow down metabolism for longer but that's under controlled conditions.

Digging for roots and rubbing the powder into the roots and surrounding soil feels more effective to me.


The water soluble is what one would use on plants already in the ground or containers, as long as some reach the roots, they will attach themselves and multiply.

another method is using a dibber or stick try to make a small whole down to the root zone, and use a granular myco.

Of course the best way is to apply it directly to your seeds and roots when planting.

The small little envelopes I got from Fungi Perfecti 1oz cost only 6 bucks and go a long way.

this is the product I am using now, but any similar product like White Shark or dozens of others I am sure would be just as good if they are fresh.
http://www.fungi.com/product-detail/product/mycogrow-soluble-1-oz.html

1 teaspoon in a gallon of water goes a long way, I have even did foliar sprays with this, since this formula has Trchoderm, it will attack other fungi on your plants, its being used commercially in some plantations for this purpose, and I have noticed a reduction in powdery mildew when I use it that way.
also the beneficial bacteria help as a foliar also.

You can grow your own,  one method I saw that someone was using, he  would grow bahia grass in wooden trays, the seeds and soil were inoculated with beneficials,which will multiply with the roots, and before the grass reaches to seeding stage, you removes it, and feeds it to the worms, but the roots and soil is used and mixed with the compost, the roots will keep the fungi happy for a while.

Not all fungi die if they do not reach a root right away, the spores can remain dormant.  its things like heat and sunlight that can kill them.  Just 1 spore reaching the root can over time multiply into the thousands and millions.

The beneficial bacteria in these products are even more hardy.

The more I research Mychorizzae and beneficial bacteria, the more I love these things, I believe it is the pro bios that will revolutionize agriculture in the future.  even corn fields have increase in production and become more drought tolerant.

But probably the ones with most experience with this stuff, are the indoor gardeners growing their "Medicinal" herbs.

One reason I picked the above product is because it has Gigaspora margarita,  which has been shown in research to have a symbiotic relationship with Mango trees.

Quote
Abstract

An experiment was conducted to study the effect of AM fungi on germination, growth and graft-take in mango. The inoculation of Gigaspora margarita and Glomus fasciculatum had resulted in highest germination (51.01 and 49.20%, respectively). The vegetative parameters (rootstock height, stock diameter and number of leaves) and root parameters (primary root length, number of secondary roots and vigour of the stock) were found to be highest in the rootstocks treated with Gigaspora margarita followed by Glomus fasciculatum. Spore count and percent root colonization were higher in the AM fungi treated rootstocks. Significantly maximum graft success was recorded by Glomus fasciculatum and Gigaspora margarita (80.30 and 83.22%, respectively). On the other hand, survival of grafts was maximum in Gigaspora margarita (95.36%) followed by Glomus fasciculatum (88.33%).


 
Quote
Interaction of 10-month-old rootstocks with Gigaspora margarita recorded maximum vegetative parameters. Significantly maximum graft-take, per cent survival of grafts, sprout height, number of leaves and graft diameter were exhibited in different aged rootstocks inoculated with AM fungi when compared to non-AM rootstocks.


arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) inoculation will increase nutrient uptake, reduce watering needs, and help keep roots healthy, even repel/kill harmful nematodes and other critters.

Mycorrhizal Inoculant - Fungi You Want In Your Organic Garden


Mycorrhizal fungi: Central Texas Gardener William Glenn



William
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fyliu

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2012, 03:12:16 PM »
Yes the spores and endospores can be dormant for a long time. Once you coax the organism out of that and they start growing, they don't have energy to last very long if conditions are not favorable. That's why fungi need to produce so much spores. I looked into growing mushrooms but the kinds I was interested in have a small return for my efforts so it was not worthwhile. Now I just get them from the mountains and toss the non-edibles in my garden. So far I've been unsuccessful in growing dead man's foot in my garden. A friend told me she has them under her lychees and they grow very well.

Saprophytes like the ink caps are also helpful to break down compost.

Tropicdude

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2012, 04:44:32 PM »
Yes the spores and endospores can be dormant for a long time. Once you coax the organism out of that and they start growing, they don't have energy to last very long if conditions are not favorable. That's why fungi need to produce so much spores. I looked into growing mushrooms but the kinds I was interested in have a small return for my efforts so it was not worthwhile. Now I just get them from the mountains and toss the non-edibles in my garden. So far I've been unsuccessful in growing dead man's foot in my garden. A friend told me she has them under her lychees and they grow very well.

Saprophytes like the ink caps are also helpful to break down compost.

Your way ahead of me, The only thing I have been using, is the inoculations, as far as growing shrooms, I have read a little on it, and its something I want to do someday, but as a city dweller with a small yard, I have no space as it is.

When I used to hike, some of the fellow hikers, would pick up mushrooms along the path, and make their meals with them, ( Usually Lipton noodle dinners or Mac and Cheese lol ) I came across some morel mushrooms once, but left them. anyway the beneficial biologicals is a whole new world, and I find it amazing and can see it will have tremendous impact in modern agriculture
William
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mangomandan

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2012, 05:34:31 PM »
Tropicdude,  have you ever done a comparison, using your  Fungi Perfecti or similar product on some plants but not others planted at same time?          I don't think I've ever heard anyone say that they were sure that this stuff helps.       Meantime, if I can find some of that Fungi Perfecti I may try it on Mahachanok as well as the jackfruit.       Again, thanks y'all.

Tropicdude

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2012, 07:40:05 PM »
Tropicdude,  have you ever done a comparison, using your  Fungi Perfecti or similar product on some plants but not others planted at same time?          I don't think I've ever heard anyone say that they were sure that this stuff helps.       Meantime, if I can find some of that Fungi Perfecti I may try it on Mahachanok as well as the jackfruit.       Again, thanks y'all.


I have not compared different products, 1st product I purchased was plant success tabs.  but these are really only useful when transplanting.  Plant Success also has soluble and granular products.  The Tabs say they have fertilizer included and I could not find any info on whether it was organic or not. also the concentration seems to be lower in the Tabs compared to powder formulas.

Fungi Perfecti is run by Paul Stamets a real Fungi expert,

Paul Stamets: 6 ways mushrooms can save the world


I am not trying to push a particular product or "brand" , the main reason I went with Fungi.com is because 1) they had small packages with no minimum quantity, 2) In the Dominican Rep. there are no Hydro shops with these types of products, and 3) All the strains are listed.

Products like White Shark and xtreme gardening etc also have attractive products.

Myco is being used commercially all over the world, one major US company for farmers is MycoApply
they have a very informative website, and have lots of videos on youtube. farmers are not going to reuse a product if it doesn't benefit their bottom line.

But I am sure that any benefits, will differ on what you are growing, each plant will react differently and different organisms may be more effective than others.

The only benefit one might see is the ability to withstand a drought, or maybe you can get by with using less fertilizer, in another species it may prevent a fatal root disease.

So depending on what your going to grow, its a good idea to find out what AM is most beneficial to that particular plant.   or if you have a nasty pest, there may be a biological control. ( example look at Spinosad ).



William
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Dangermouse01

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2012, 08:40:04 PM »
Epsoma make a product called "Bio-tone Starter Plus" that contains mycorrhizae.
http://www.espoma.com/p_consumer/biotone_02.html

I find it at Lowes (near me), but a lot of places carry Epsoma products.

DM

fyliu

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2012, 11:21:11 PM »
There are many species of mycorhizae fungi that live both outside and inside roots. I'm sure Stamet's formula has a very good blend of them. He's one of the more prominent figures in the mushroom world.

Bananimal

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2012, 12:46:00 PM »
To get things growing at their best in our poor Florida soil I use these amendments. Cut off the water lines to the treated plants/trees for 2 days to let the stuff absorb.

Mycorrhizae Fungus.  Before planting in ground or in a pot I wet the roots of vegg seedlings, banana corms and all fruit trees first and sprinkle the myco powder on the roots.  Let it dry out a bit to get sticky and plant carefully to avoid rubbing off.  Sprinkle some into the planting hole too.  Use a bread flower sprinkler to apply the myco powder to avoid waste.  Can be used for a drench but can get expensive.  Organic Labs recommends 1 cup of Myco powder per gal of H2O.  Excavating the top layer roots sounds good.  I do this when I cut out a banana sucker.   Powder the exposed roots and fill in.

Fish Emulsion.  Drench weekly to get things started and periodically especially the first year.

Kelp Extract.  Drench or spray the same as fish.  BTW, if you want to see accelerated root growth this is the best stuff.  Strong growth is caused by hormones – not nutrients.  Kelp contains the hormone geberillic acid – do the research.

Humic Acid.  Increases micronutrient uptake.  Drench, foliar spray or put directly into soil.

For greatest foliar impact spray all three together – fish, kelp and humic.  Get a backpack sprayer – I love my SPO four gal knapsack sprayer – works well with wettable powders.

To guarantee all this is not for naught mulch heavily with shredded bark.  It’s not a bad idea to first buy some red worms and get them in the hole fill when planting.  Then apply the bark mulch.  The worm castings they produce, and the bark they feed on as it breaks down, will maintain a healthy growing environment for years to come.  One warning – cut back on the chemical ferts and check them for salt content.  Salts will kill off the worms.

My sources:

Mycorrhizae Fungus.  Organic Labs, Stuart Fla ---“ Myco Stim”.  Contains several types of myco fungus, plus Kelp extracts and Humic acid.  Myco colonies in the root zone can live forever as long as too much salts don’t whack ‘em.

Fish Emulsion.  I use Alaska brand from HD or Lowes.

Kelp Extract and Humic Acid.  Mine come by mail order from Peaceful Valley at groworganic.com.  We sure could use an outfit like this in Florida.  The Fla Hydro shops charge out the WHAZOO for these items. :P
« Last Edit: August 11, 2012, 10:22:55 PM by Bananimal »
Dan

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2012, 01:33:15 PM »
@Dan

Looks like you have all the bases loaded. that's a good combo.  as they say, "Feed the soil, not the plant".
William
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mangomandan

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2012, 06:21:08 PM »
Again, thanks for taking the time to list various products and sources.  I really appreciate it.

I was also, incidentally, reminded that I should look into whether the home growing of edible mushrooms is practical under subtropical conditions. But that's a subject for another forum and another day.

fyliu

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2012, 07:42:17 PM »
Just look for aycological society near you for information about local mushrooms and growing edible ones.

Guanabanus

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #20 on: August 14, 2012, 11:21:59 PM »
Mycorrhizae help to decompose organic wastes, such as leaves, and channel the resulting nutrients into the roots of the co-operating plant which feeds the mycorrhizae with glucose from the plant's photosynthesizing leaves.  If there is no organic waste to decompose, the mycorrhizae will still need handouts from the roots, but won't be able to contribute anything useful.
Har

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #21 on: August 15, 2012, 12:52:32 AM »
I heard that painting the inside of the pot with a copper based paint will prevent the roots from growing to touch the pot, which helps to prevent the tree from being root-bound.
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Tropicdude

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #22 on: August 15, 2012, 01:38:45 AM »
Mycorrhizae help to decompose organic wastes, such as leaves, and channel the resulting nutrients into the roots of the co-operating plant which feeds the mycorrhizae with glucose from the plant's photosynthesizing leaves.  If there is no organic waste to decompose, the mycorrhizae will still need handouts from the roots, but won't be able to contribute anything useful.

If there is no nutrients in the soil, then it wont matter either way, what the Myco does is essentially extend the ability of the roots to gather nutrients and water to the plant, less fertilizer is needed, and minerals in the ground are transported to the roots.  also the myco stimulate the roots to grow bigger which means more carbo than you would have if you didn't have myco.  and because one is going to fertilize anyway so just use organic fertilizer.

And the other benefits of mycorrhizzae is its ability to attack and/or protect against harmful bacteria, fungi , and even some bugs. phosphorous is difficult for plants to uptake, and leaches out of the soil, AM  in the root zone enables the plant to solubilise Phosphorous and move it into the plant.
William
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fyliu

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #23 on: August 15, 2012, 02:11:54 AM »
Yes, mycorrhizae is like an extra stomach and immune system for plants. Fungi are territorial and will try to keep the host all to themselves and attack any newcomers, similar to an immune response.

The ones that live off of leaves are saprophytic fungi that don't usually have connection to plant roots.

Mycorrhizae eat sugars and starch from the plant roots. But saprophytes eat cellulose which is in the opposite molecular configuration to glucose sugar. What I'm wondering is whether one fungi can eat both glucose and cellulose, or they're specific like humans that enjoy eating potato but not wood.

Guanabanus

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Re: Encouraging root growth?
« Reply #24 on: August 15, 2012, 09:37:23 PM »
When I was still working at Zill's nursery in the late 1990's, I did comparison trials with 15 species of plants, in one- or two-gallon containers, mostly fruits, each species with one dozen plants treated with a commercial mix of mycorrhizae, and one dozen without treatment.  All but one species showed no difference.  The one species that showed a difference was slightly smaller with the mycorrhizae than without. 

With plants that are already growing well in fine potting soil, with even moisture and excellent slow-release fertilizers, addition of mycorrhizae is a waste of money, UNTIL the times comes to plant the plants out in harsher conditions;  that would be the time to inoculate.

Mycorrhizae in a nursery is also very important with rainforest species that have proven to be otherwise nearly impossible to grow.
Har

 

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