What is Trichoderma?
Your secret weapon in disease management and plant health.
The Friendly Fungi
Trichoderma is a genus of common saprotrophic fungi, isolated from decaying organic material, which displays a remarkable spectrum of bio-activity.
The ability of selected Trichoderma spp (strains) to directly antagonize plant pathogens AND to stimulate plant growth and defence responses has led to their widespread use in agriculture both for disease control and yield increases.
However, not all strains are created equal and it is only by using the best well-researched strains of Trichoderma in an effective product formulation that the huge potential of this multi-tasking subterranean work horse may be unlocked.
Our products contain a mixture of New Zealand Trichoderma atroviride strains, in proprietary formulations designed to support colonisation of the active ingredient and for easy crop application.
Products are built on multi decades of New Zealand use with research in-house and jointly with the BioProtection Unit at Lincoln University facilitating continual product innovation and improvement.
Trichoderma atroviride strains are characterised by a distinctive coconut odour from a specific secondary antifungal metabolite known as 6-PAP (6-pentyl-α-pyrone). This metabolite has been demonstrated to directly inhibit the growth of several plant pathogenic fungi, including Botrytis Cinerea, Fusarium spp, Sclerotinia spp, Phytophthora spp, Rhizoctonia solani and Armillaria mellea.
Trichoderma atroviride is non-toxic to plants and exempt from all MRL, there is no danger of over application or phytotoxicity. Environmental, with organic registrations, and User safety is exemplary.
Trichoderma fungi work well as soil inoculants. If using Trichoderma as a disease control rather than a preventative it is best to treat infections early.
How do they Work?
Multiple Modes of Action
Multiple Modes of Action ALL lead to improved plant health and crop yields
Trichoderma spp are found in soil, growing on bark, wood debris, other fungi and a multitude of hosts demonstrating their high opportunistic potential and their adaptability to successfully operate in a wide range of environments.
Fast growing, dominant and utilizing a wide range of nutrients they produce a suite of bio-active compounds and enzymes which directly inhibit and destroy competitors and via their direct interactions with plant roots induce longer-term plant benefits.
Trichoderma switches enzyme production depending on the amount and type of food source available – cellulose, a major component in plant fibres and crop resides is a ready source of nutrient digested by cellulase a major enzyme produced by Trichoderma.
In the spring when temperatures and pathogen activity are low Trichoderma will feed on the readily available cellulose from any crop debris converting the fibrous organic matter into humus thereby locking-up carbon for many decades in this stable organic matter. This is effectively carbon Sequestration and of tremendous environmental significance.
Direct activity on fungal competitors including plant pathogens via Competition / Antagonism / Myco-parasitism
Introduced Trichoderma spp grow vigorously especially when provisioned with growth promotors from the formulation / feedstock enabling active root-zone colonisation across widespread growing conditions.
This active zone/space colonisation produces competition for resources and space causing antagonism of a wide range of fungi particularly pathogenic organisms. Research also reports that bacteria and viruses can be inhibited by Trichoderma spp.
Active myco-parasitism occurs when the colonising Trichoderma use gradient sensing chemistry to locate other fungi, before juxtaposing mycelium prior to coiling and destruction. A synergistic mixture of
antifungal enzymes are secreted, including chitanase and glucanase, which mediate myco-parasitism by breaking down and digesting target compounds in mycelial cell walls.
Crop Yeild WITHOUT Trichoderma
Crop Yeild WITH Trichoderma
Direct activity on plant roots Induces Local and Systemic Resistance / Sustained endophyte action.
Trichoderma thrive on interaction with plant roots – they are attracted by the glucose exuding from the tips. However, it is a symbiotic relationship and these beneficial fungi release a suite of secondary metabolites to support their host. These include auxinlike hormones that have a profound effect on root and shoot growth.
Trichoderma produces acidic exudates which break the bond between locked-up calcium and phosphate and deliver both minerals to the host plant. The fungal hyphae also provide more surface area to access phosphorus, the most immobile of all minerals.
Endophytic Trichoderma spp colonize the root epidermis and outer cortical layers where bioactive compounds are released which, in addition to activation of resistance pathways in the plant, increases nutrient uptake and plant growth.
Research reports that resistance to a bacterial pathogen can be found in a plant’s leaves with fungal colonisation of just the roots and this demonstrates the induction of systemic resistance in the plant. It has also been noted inoculated plants are noticeably greener which together with increased plan growth suggests Trichoderma was improving photosynthesis.
There is no build-up of resistance with multiple natural modes of action.
Subscribe to stay up to date on company news