CEPlac develops research with fungi to stimulate plant growth

The technique also guarantees greater resistance to diseases and pests and increased yield for rural producers.

25.10.2019 | 20:59 (UTC -3)

The Executive Committee of the Cocoa Farming Plan (Ceplac) develops research to use fungi of the Trichoderma species as bio-stimulators of plant growth. The species is also effective in growing different agricultural crops to increase resistance against diseases and pests.

The fungi are kept by the institution in a mycotheque. The collection, located at the Ceplac unit on the axis between Itabuna and Ilhéus, has more than 400 microorganisms from the Atlantic Forest. The material was collected over 30 years of research and can be used in any agricultural cultivation, including horticulture and floriculture.

Researchers Antônio Zozimo and Givaldo Rocha Niella, who work at Ceplac's Biocontrol Unit and Plant Health Section, explain that the Trichoderma genus has excellent biodecomposers and, therefore, growth stimulators. “The collection is an exceptional biological treasure for practical use by producers and business projects”, commented Antônio Zózimo.

The work attracted the attention of agronomist and flower producer Carlos Alberto Severino, partner of Floricultura Dona Flor, located at Fazenda Modelo, in the town of Peroba in the municipality of Lajedo do Tabocal in Bahia. The businessman visited all areas of production, selection and the Ceplac fungi collection with an interest in using microorganisms to grow flowers on his property.

The producer reported that he was impressed with what he saw and stated that the Atlantic Forest fungus germplasm bank maintained by Ceplac offers options for growing plants using innovative technology with biological resources.

“I found what we need here. The Ceplac laboratory provided us with an inoculant made from a species of Trichoderma, which will be tested in the Floriculture area, where we currently grow Santa Rita palm, chrysanthemums, roses, among others. Technical monitoring will be carried out to evaluate the development, efficiency, effectiveness and profitability of this technology, evaluating the control of soil pests, mainly pathogenic fungi that inhabit the rhizosphere”, he reported.

The agronomist explained that the fungus he took to his farm has a very high multiplication speed, reproducing in just four days. And he celebrates that the use of this technique will enable high-yield and quality agriculture in the cultivation of flowers.

“The genus Trichoderma has more than 250 species differentiated at the DNA level, a gigantic world opens up for our use, not only in the biological control of pests, but as a tool for accelerating the development of any and all crops, such as flowers, vegetables and fruit plants”, he highlighted.

Researcher Givaldo informed that Ceplac is carrying out research in conjunction with the Federal University of Southern Bahia on the use of Trichoderma species as a growth stimulator in the production of eucalyptus seedlings. The results of this research were sent for publication in an international journal. “It is a new alternative that is opening up. That’s what research is, we have to be exploring new frontiers” said Givaldo.

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