What are soil microbes?

Microbes are single celled organisms found in the soil. They excel at metabolizing a variety of soil food sources by converting them into useable by-products for plant uptake and use.

Find more answers to common questions about these amazing microorganisms below.

Why are beneficial microbes important for plant health?

Root zone microorganisms are important because they are the ‘gatekeepers’ that facilitate nutrient and mineral entry into the plant roots.    If bacteria are not present, or not present in great enough numbers, then soil and plant health as well as crop fertility will suffer.

Beneficial rootzone bacteria are absolutely required for good soil and plant health.  They are essential in promoting and facilitating newly solubilized and available nutrients and minerals (through bacteria action) into the plant rootzone.  Without the right types of microorganisms at the rootzone, then the majority of nutrients will remain in the soil and will not be allowed to enter the plant, thus effecting plant growth, health and productivity.

Illustration of rootzone bacterial colonies facilitating newly released nutrients into the growing plant – The Gatekeepers at the Roots.

Are microbials sustainable and environmentally-friendly?

Yes, all beneficial microbes can be considered sustainable to the environment if they are naturally-derived, non-GMO and positively contribute to the improvement of soil and plant health.

Can beneficial bacteria improve air and water channeling in compacted soils?

Yes beneficial rootzone microorganisms work to improve soil tilth and texture in compacted and undesirable soils.  The beneficial bacteria produce by-products that form agglomerates that stick together to open new channels for air and water penetration.  Beneficial microbes are very good at improving soil health through increased colonization and agglomeration of the soil.

Illustration of beneficial microbes facilitated water and air channeling.  A loosening of soil compaction is a direct result of bacterial agglomeration activity in the soil.  New fingering channels can form after rootzone microbials colonize in high enough numbers.

What is the EcoBiome and how can the EcoBiome help me?

The EcoBiome is a revolutionary and patent-pending environmental microbiology screening platform designed to isolate and characterize all microorganisms from environmental samples.

There is a microorganism responsible for releasing every nutrient and mineral in the soil.  Meet Your Microbial Cultures through an EcoBiome test analysis.  The EcoBiome will analyze your soil and enumerate the microbes responsible for specific nutrient release.  The EcoBiome will define the soil microbial profile in a way that will provide new data to improve results, soil health and profits.

The EcoBiome can contribute to all profit and non-profit organizations in pursuit of science innovation and commercial discovery.  Our approach and mission is to discover and characterize all possible microorganisms from the environment in an elegant manner for production and commercialization.

Let the EcoBiome Innovation Center give your soil the best chance for success!

What is the average turnaround time for results after my samples are submitted?

Average turnaround time after receiving the samples will be approximately 2-4 days after receipt.  However, we will try our best for the fastest possible turnaround time.

What will be listed on the lab reports and recommendations?

Each lab report result will show the enumeration of the particular group requested from the order form.  Minimum threshold recommendations will also be provided that list the minimum CFU (colony forming units) that are recommended per gram of soil or sample.  This will allow the customer to develop a programmed and prescriptive approach to rebalancing and restoring their microbial environment.

What is Cultured Soil®?

Cultured Soil® is EcoBiome’s patent-pending beneficial microbial dissolvable tablets that consist of newly isolated single species or multi-species microorganisms.  These dissolvable tablets are in an easy-to-use form that provide instant microbial biodiversity to any liquid solution and soil.  Cultured Soil is custom designed for the large customer, backyard gardener or for Urban Gardening and Agriculture to easily add biodiversity back to the soil.  Cultured Soil tablets build the soil biology back to a state of balance and good health for optimal plant, vegetable and fruit production.

How do microbes change the soil to release nutrients?

Bacteria work to accelerate the breakdown of organic matter into inorganic material – the plant useable form. This process is called nutrient recycling. Microorganisms are excellent recyclers of soil nutrients and minerals for improved plant uptake. A majority of nutrients are present in the soil in an insoluble form, unavailable for plant use. Microbes are the only organisms on earth that are able to convert them into plant useable forms for improved crop yield and soil health.

Illustration of beneficial microbes breaking ionic bonds and changing nutrients from an insoluble to a soluble form.  Plant roots can only take in nutrients when they are in a soluble and available form after microbial action – Meet Your Microbial Cultures.


Can microbes damage the soil?

No, microbes do not damage the soil, even at very high doses. In soil health, the ‘salt index’ of a product determines how much damage to plant fertility and root development will be done if a product is overapplied. For example, Urea has a salt index of 74.4, DAP has a salt index of 29.2, whereas beneficial microbes have a salt index of 0. As a result, beneficial soil microbes have no potential to damage soils or plants, even at higher than recommended dosages.

What are the benefits of microbes?

Beneficial microbes change the structure, water and air channeling in the soil that directly improve soil and plant health.

Due to the application of beneficial microbes, the mineral and nutrient content that has long been “locked” in the soil will be released and available to the plant. As a result, mineral, vitamin and nutrient content in crops, vegetables and fruits will be improved over time – it all begins at the roots, thus it is essential to learn as much as possible about your soil microbiology.

What are the functions of microorganisms in the soil?

Beneficial microorganisms are diverse in their physical characteristics and biochemistry.  They are all distinct in their requirements for energy, food, oxygen and climates.  The wide scope of organisms that work to complete the soil food web cycle in the soil is complex to optimize plant nutrient uptake and utilization. Beneficial microbes are superior at recycling nutrients in the soil all year long, providing timely nutrients to plants when they need it the most. Additionally, beneficial microbes work in synergy to form a competitive exclusion layer surrounding the rootzone (rhizosphere) to protect the plant from disease and invaders.

Microbial colonization of the rootzone is the first step in promoting  a healthy soil and plant.  Colonization of bacteria throughout the rhizosphere allows for optimal nutrient release, nutrient plant uptake, soil health and a productive plant.

Are there any limitations to the types and varieties of plants and crops that can be treated with beneficial microbes?

There are no limits to the types of garden plants, shrubs, landscapes or crops available for treatment with microbials. All plants and soil types are can be improved through microbial action in the soil. Fundamentally, beneficial microbes excel at composting the soil 24/7, releasing nutrients that have long been unavailable.  The end result will be enhanced soil tilth and improved microbial biodiversity throughout the rootzone with an excess of nutrients and enhanced soil fertility.

How does the climate and weather patterns affect the microbes or soil?

Climates and soil types have a varying effect on soil biodiversity. However, microbes are diverse and are able to work in concert with one another to fully cycle and complete essential biochemical reactions in a variety of climates.  As a result, the testing of the soil microbial profile is essential and key to understanding the health of the soil.  Let the EcoBiome define your microbial profile like no other science.

How do beneficial microbes improve the soil?

Microorganisms improve soil tilth, lessens soil compaction and expands water channeling and aerification. Beneficial microbes are superior nutrient recyclers and decomposers, resulting in an abundance of nutrients and minerals in the soil over the long-term. As a result, the concentrations of most, if not all, of the major and minor nutrients will increase in the soil horizon profile and will be available for new plant growth, as well as carryover into the next planting season.  It is important to know that the indigenous microbes in the soil may be deficient or unable to contribute to the plant’s success, thus the addition of beneficial microbes will help to contribute to improved fertility and soil health.

Do I need to treat my soil every year?

It is recommended to continue an annual treatment program that works to fortify your soil with beneficial microbes. This continued annual application(s) will ensure strong colonization of the bacteria and yearlong composting, recycling and mineralization.  This is the catalyst for successful soil health and sustainability.

How fast do the microbes become active once they are applied to the soil?

Once the bacteria are blended into solution and applied to the soil, the microbes will take approximately 2-3 days to “wake up” out of sporulation and begin to colonize, metabolize and mineralize the soil.  Colonization is the key for optimal performance by the microbes.

Can I mix with city water/tap water/treated water?

Yes, water can be used with city and well water. It is recommended to test the levels of iron and chloride beforehand and to filter these concentrations if they are exceedingly high.

How are Cultured Soil microbes packaged?

Our microbial products have been pressed into a patent-pending water soluble tablet form that is highly concentrated and easily soluble in all liquid solutions. Cultured Soil will deliver instant biology to your soil!

Can you overapply microbials to the soil or to the foliar part of a plant?

No, beneficial microbials cannot be over applied to the soil or to the foliar portion of a plant.

Is there a best time of day to apply beneficial microbes?

Microbials can be applied at any time of the day.  Cultured Soil can be added to any liquid solution via a pouring container or irrigation line without clogging nozzles.  The unique biology in Cultured Soil will deliver potent and valuable microbial colonies that will absolutely enhance and contribute to soil health and plant growth.  Meet Your Microbial Cultures!

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