Microbes In Plants Increases Diversity In Species

Within the plant community it is always important to maintain diversity to ensure efficient spreading and reproduction. We as humans benefit from the plant kingdom in many ways, which makes it important for us to help them grow properly.

A recent study carried out on plant’s have made a new discovery on the growth rate of plants. This was inspired from a certain plant in Yale which did not grow as the rest of the same type plants. A study of the soil composition showed a slight difference which was the main cause of the growth problem. A certain microbial pathogen was behind the event which is concerned with the genotype level.

Increase in the microbial pathogen was modeled to produce a large diversity of species in the same soil. A researcher at the University of Zurich and a former visiting doctoral student at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, Jenalle Eck was the lead author in the Yale team. He commented on the results obtained stating, “We often think of pathogens as pests, but we’re finding that they play a key role in a highly diverse ecosystem.”

The implementation experiment included the use of a shade-house where he planet more than 200 seeds of the same tree (Virola Surinamensis). The difference between the pots was the soil placed, where some of them contained their own soil, while others contained soil from other plants of the same species.

The study, experiment and results are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.