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A Truly Novel Mechanism: EnSoil Algae Acts as a "Taxi Service," Taking Bacteria to Plant Roots

Earlier this year, Dr. White observed EnSoil Algae under a microscope and discovered its unique role. The algal cells transport beneficial bacteria into plant roots, leading to improved plant growth. He considered this mechanism truly novel.


According to Dr. James White, EnSoil Algae act as a hidden cover crop around plants, continuously supplying them with bacteria for a process called rhizophagy. Unlike regular cover crops, the algae directly target the plant's root tips where they deliver the bacteria. This system has the potential to improve soil health and sustainably fertilize crops.


Here's what we know:


1. Chlorella vulgaris is a type of algae that can move inside plant roots and root hairs.

2. Chlorella vulgaris carries bacteria inside itself, releasing them into the root hairs, where they become beneficial bacteria, known as endophytes.

3. This symbiotic relationship between algae, bacteria, and plants promotes the growth of more root hairs and lateral roots, resulting in overall improved plant growth.


The process works like this:


EnSoil Algae serve as a "taxi service", selectively picking important bacteria from the soil and transporting them into the plant roots. Once inside the roots, the plant releases a substance called superoxide. This causes the algal cells to heat up and release the bacteria along with the algae's valuable nutrients like chlorophyll. The bacteria gather at the tip of the root, like they've arrived at their destination and are gathering for a party, causing it to expand and resulting in enhanced plant growth.


Check out Camille's awesome interpretation of this process as an infographic below!


Root hair growth enhances plant growth:


When a plant has more root hairs, it means its roots have a larger surface area to absorb water and nutrients from the soil. This increased absorption allows the plant to acquire the essential resources it needs to grow and thrive.

Up until this point, we had firmly held onto the belief that something truly remarkable was taking place with the algae, and having the privilege to witness it alongside Dr. James White has been nothing short of spectacular. Just as the algae serves as a vehicle to transport bacteria into the plants, we too act as a vehicle, offering this innovative mechanism to our growers. If you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to reach out to Merideth at merideth@enlightenedsoil.com or 843-532-4031. We are committed to moving forward and continuously evolving through this research. Sincerely, The ESC Crew www.enlightenedsoil.com





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