Beneficial fungi may do more than just help producers combat pests. Entomopathogenic fungi (EPF) are often thought of as arthropod control in the biologics world. However, the beneficial fungi may act as a stimulant for the plant as well.
In the latest episode of the Making Sense of Biologicals campaign, UC Cooperative Extension Advisor Dr. Surendra Dara discusses research over the past few years that suggest there are some side benefits to fungi. Highlighting three non-entomopathogenic ways EPFs could benefit a plant, Dara said these products are to be used as directed by the label but might also have a positive side-effect.
“Many of these microbes play multiple roles. The kind of role they play also depends on the strain and the amount we are using,” Dara said. “According to the label guidelines, we are not supposed to use these for other purposes…But if someone is applying one of these products for controlling a pest, they might be getting the benefit from other roles.”
Dara stresses growers must abide by the label rules and cannot use a product for something other than purposes dictated by the label.
Listen to the episode with Dr. Surendra Dara.
‘Making Sense of Biologicals’ is a series from AgNet West that dives into various topics with unbiased experts in the field of biologics to help the industry better understand the product category.
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