Pathogenic Microbes

The bad news is that soil contamination has the longest, most persistent potential for harboring a pathogen. The good news is beneficial bacteria and fungus compete for food and space. These good guys form protective nets/webs around roots and leaf surfaces all the while producing vitamins and antibodies that lay to waste the microbes living off of a healthy plant. This prevents most pathogenic bacteria and fungus from invading a plant, be it roots stems or leaves. Soils with a high diversity of bacteria and fungal types are more likely to have a larger number of non-pathogenic microbes. These beneficial microbes will out-compete their pathogenic cousins.  Using the soils own food web's natural defenses is by far the better way to keep the bad guys at bay. You might want to check out the report I put together Bacterial Biofilms. It's amazing the energy, both chemical and ethereal, that is directed at the bacterial level pushing to form communal colonies of biofilms. Personally, I like clean sheets at home but these little guys think their slimy adobes are to-die-for.

Get to Know this list of Pathogens Below

Broad Mite Description | Control

Broad Mite Description | Control

Broad Mites are a very real hazard when propagating peppers. Of all the foods available for them to eat, peppers are the most nutritional for this pest. So heads-up. If you are going to grow your own supply of super hot capsicum like the Bhut Jolokia Ghost Pepper, or even the simplest sweet baby bell, you need to know how to identify and control this big problem this little bug can cause. Way back when I first started growing pepper plants, my peppers caught this bug instantaneously. I am growing in the upper central valley in my beautiful home nest of Costa Rica. I searched the internet...

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Managing Whiteflies

Managing Whiteflies

“I  Have  Whiteflys!!!” From one morning to the next you mossy over to your pet bushes and bend down to smell one of your favorites. Like a bad dream, you see a white flex fleeting the vicinity of your incoming nostril breath. An old wound in your soul opens as you realize, “there back!”. Immediately you run to the microbe biological medicine cabinet in the garden house’s refrigerator. There you frantically search for the right bacteria, or was it fungus. A cold sweet breaks out on your forehead as you fumble for your list and notes. It reads: Trichoderma...

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Phytophthora the Hydro Plant-Destroyer

Phytophthora the Hydro Plant-Destroyer

Phytophthora is a genus of plant-destroying Oomycetes, commonly called water molds. Approximately 100 species have been described, although 100-500 undiscovered Phytophthora species are estimated to exist. I just hope one doesn’t invade my hydro-organic system. But I doubt it will. If you have a strong growth of beneficial biofilm going in your system, you most probably will never encounter this most common hydroponic fungus-like pathogen. Phytophthora is morphologically very similar to true fungi yet its evolutionary history is quite distinct. In contrast to fungi, they are more...

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Fungus Gnats | Diptera Mycetophilidae

Fungus Gnats | Diptera Mycetophilidae

Fungus Gnats or Root Gnats are two common names for a few flying insects Diptera Mycetophilidae, Lycoriella spp. or Bradysia spp. These are arthropods that might be a nuisance flying around haphazardly knocking into leaves and the sides of your pots. I use organic substrates and I hate those critters. Growers using traditional hydroponic (using no substrate inoculates) see them a lot less. The adult fly is feasting on small pieces of organic matter breaking it down for even smaller organisms to mineralize. I hate gnats because once they have moved in, they are hard to move out. The adults...

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