Soil science blog

Activating microbes so they can work their soil magic

The secret to activating newly added microbes in the soil is simple. Just add water.

When your goal is self-sustaining revegetation, balancing the soil and introducing the right microbes is one thing. The next part is crucial. Activation through watering and establishing a biomass. Without water, nothing happens.

Microbes need water and food from nutrients, biostimulants and minerals – the same as plants. Even if there is only a limited amount of water available, the microbes will control almost everything. Cover crop seeds will start germinating in a startlingly short amount of time and a proper microbial system will develop, correcting imbalances in the soil.

The initial phase for a microbial system is building a biomass (renewable organic material) below the ground that can access more water and nutrients. This increased biomass also reduces the risk of erosion by binding the soil together. Once established, the above-ground biomass increases and provides increased carbon sugars to the microbes below = a beautiful symbiosis.

It’s this biomass that’s critical to a self-sustaining system, with the microbes quickly recycling the biomass above ground and below ground to build nutrient-rich carbon for the next cycle of growth.

Introducing the BioGrowth regenerative revegetation program

Designed by Australia’s leading soil scientists, EnviroStraw’s BioGrowth program is all about simplifying the process we’ve outlined over the past four blogs in our microbial series. It’s a fresher, more effective way to revegetate disturbed soils on mine sites and construction sites.

BioGrowth is a world first – a microbial carbon regenerative revegetation program purpose-designed for the revegetation industry using EnviroStraw products. It holistically builds on conventional rehabilitation practices by rejuvenating depleted soils, increasing beneficial microbial activity and increasing soil carbon.

To see BioGrowth in action, take a look at the tables below taken from very challenging soil on a mine site that was eroding and putting the railway asset at risk.

The BioGrowth approach was simple: repair the erosion and create a suitable seed bed by applying our EnviroMatrix biotic growth amendment (the one with a suite of 22 microbes).

No other soil conditioners or compost were used apart from the correct suite of microbes and the soil-building inputs in our EnviroMatrix product. Note that the carbon level increased, the pH level dropped and the calcium-magnesium ratio balanced in a relatively short period of time.

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