Deep Root Injections with Mycorrhizal Fungi

Mycorrhizal fungi are a big reason why the natural habitats are healthy and productive without artificial inputs of fertilizers and irrigation.

Cropping systems could be more sustainable by managing mycorrhizal fungi for increased yields and greater efficiencies.

Mycorrhizae are particularly important in mobilizing phosphorus, nitrogen, zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, sulfur and other tightly bound soil nutrients by enzymatic release from recalcitrant chemical bonds and transporting them back to the plant.

Mycorrhizal Fungi play a definitive role in a plant’s natural defense against fungal root diseases such as phytophthora, fusarium, phythium and rhizoctonia.

Mycorrhizal Fungi produce and release suppressive exudates such as antibiotics that inhibit infection by these and other fungal root pathogens.

Studies have documented that mycorrhizae also defends root systems by forming a physical barrier to deter invasion by soil pathogens.

This barrier is made of Chitin (the same tough material as in insect shells,) forming a tough, protective layer over the outside of root cells. Certain modern agricultural practices are known to suppress the biological activity in soils.

Fungicides, chemical fertilizers, cultivation, compaction, soil erosion and periods of fallow are all factors that can contribute adversely to populations of beneficial mycorrhizal fungi.

The fungi are completely dependent on their host plants for sustenance and cannot survive for any extended duration without the presence of living roots.

The crop plants become isolated from the beneficial mycorrhizal fungi that would, in natural ecosystems, be abundantly available to spread colonization to their roots.

Without adjacency to natural areas acting as a source of mycorrhizal hyphae and spores to re-populate depleted lands, arbuscular mycorrhizal populations are very slow to re-establish.

Since arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi do not disperse spores via wind or water, but rather grow from root to root, re-colonization across long distances back into farm soil from undisturbed natural sites becomes slow and difficult.

90% of plants don’t have roots! 

Nearly all plants in their natural environments do not have roots. They have “mycorrhizae” (pronounced my-cor-rhi-zee) which literally means “fungus-roots”

In undisturbed natural habitats these mycorrhizal fungi proliferate on the roots of plants and spread into the surrounding soil as a great mass of tiny absorptive threads.

Plants use their photosynthetic leaves to fulfill mycorrhizal fungal carbon needs while mycorrhizal fungi return the favor by attaining nutrients and water for the plant.


If we do not degrade the soil, it can yield a sustainable flow of valuable ecosystem services far into the future.

The microscopic bacteria and fungi underfoot have real economic value, estimated in the trillions of dollars.

To create a sustainable agricultural future, the soil should be the last place we degrade resources and the first place we look for inspiration.

The Soil 

The soil is home to the most populous community on the seven continents — the soil micro-biome.

90% of all organisms live underground.

There can be 10,000-50,000 species in less than a teaspoon of soil.

In that same teaspoon of soil, there are more microbes than there are people on the Earth.

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