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What is a Biostimulant?

A plant biostimulant is any substance or microorganism applied to plants with the aim to enhance nutrition efficiency, abiotic stress tolerance (abiotic factors are the non-living parts of an environment and include sunlight, temperature, weather and altitude) and/or crop quality traits.  Biostimulants promote plant growth without being a fertilizer.  Biostimulants are available in many formulations and with varying ingredients. The most popular ingredients are seaweed extracts, beneficial bacteria, and beneficial fungi and humic substances (humic and fulvic acids).

Seaweed (Ascophyllum nodosum)

Seaweed is an important soil improver rich in minerals, trace elements and amino acids. It is a slow release soil conditioner and regular dressings will stimulate microbial activity acting to improve soil structure and fertility. Promotes healthy growth and increased yield in fruit and vegetables, longer lasting, richer coloured flowers.

Seaweed extracts act as biostimulants mainly due to the presence of plant hormones. Main phytohormones identified in seaweed extracts are: auxins, cytokinins, gibberelins, abscisic acid and ethylene.

  • Auxins are responsible for the growth of plant tissues, cell division, plant movements and plant aging.
  • Cytokinins are involved in cell division regulation affecting plant growth and rest period. They also inhibit the aging of plant tissues and play crucial role in transport of nutrients.
  • Gibberellins help with seed germination, breaking bud dormancy and fruit development.
  • Abscisic acid and ethylene help with stress factors and inhibition of cell growth.

Mycorrhizae  - beneficial bacteria

Mycorrhizae are actually a fungus. They exist as very tiny, microscopic threads  which are all interconnected into a net-like web which measures hundreds or thousands of miles - all packed into a tiny area around the plant.  Fungal threads can grow many metres from the roots and are microscopically thin, thus they end up in places where roots can never reach. This greatly extended root system of the plants facilitates much easier absorption of water and nutrients.  The association between a green plant and Mycorrhizae is a symbiotic association  The plant makes organic molecules such as sugars by photosynthesis and supplies them to the fungus, and the fungus supplies to the plant water and mineral nutrients, such as phosphorus, taken from the soil.

Advantages of Mycorhizae

  • The absorption capacity of the roots increases by as much as 700%. It is much easier for the plants to absorb nutrients and water. The beneficial fungi and soil bacteria occupy the space around the roots so that pathogens are kept away.
  • Many scientific studies show that the presence of useful mycorrhizal fungi noticeably improves plant health.
  • Plants can also make do with less fertiliser. In addition, organic fertilisers are utilised better. The mycorrhizae thereby support plant resistance; they improve growth and the crop produces more fruit of better quality.
  • Plants with mycorrhizae are more resistant to drought, severe temperature variations, pH changes, toxic metals and soil compacting. Mycorrhizae also ensure better soil structure due to their contribution to forming ‘soil aggregates’

Stimuter

Stimuter is a water-based, highly concentrated composition of specifically targeted herbal concentrates. The product is safe for human, animal and environment. Available in liquid form, granular and micro granular.

  • Stimuter is absorbed by the soil, roots and leaves of the plant.
  • Its root-stimulating and plant-enhancing ingredients allow the plant to develop an increased resistance and vitality. It is especially useful when plant stress is expected, due to transplanting, weather conditions etc.
  • Stimuter can be used to increase the resistance and vitality of all plants in agriculture and horticulture. The product supports the natural regenerative capacity and has a nurturing, nourishing and enhancing effect on the plants of which the soil and roots are affected by external causes.

AMN BonaVita

An organic plant and soil additive containing proteins, amino acids and vitamins which feed and promote soil micro-organisms. After more than a decade of studying the substances found in the supremely fertile primeval forest soils of the world, BonaVita was formulated to introduce a range of the nutrients found there into cultivated soils.

  • Contains proteins, amino acids and vitamins which feed the plants and soil micro-organisms including Mycorrhiza fungi.
  • The improved soil biology can reduce fertilizer requirements by 30%.
  • Can be sprayed or added to irrigation systems.
  • Can be used on sensitive plants.
  • Composed of plant extracts and organic residues from food production.

Humisol

A liquid bio-humus created from worm casts and enriched with their microflora. Includes humates, fulvic acids, phytohormones and highly available trace elements which work to promote plant health and release nutrients from the soil. Humus is the dark organic matter that forms in soils when dead plant and animal matter is fully decomposed. The compounds found in humus, mainly humates and fulvic acids, have important properties for soil and plant health such as stabilising nitrogen, promoting mycorrhizal fungi and freeing locked up Phosphorus.

  • Humisol is produced from Biohumus which is the controlled creation of humus using red worms to treat cow dung.
  • Contains humates, fulvic acids, amino-acids, vitamins, phytohormones and a variety of micro organisms including spore bacteria, lactobacteria and bifidobacteria.
  • These elements confer increased resistance of bacterial and fungal diseases to plants. This resistance is also helped by the presence of highly available trace elements like Copper and Zinc.
  • Helps with the availability of N, P and trace elements in the soil.
  • Stimulates plant enzymes and promotes root development.
  • Increased yield and qualitative characteristics in trials.

All of the above are approved for use in organic agriculture.

 

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