|UCROS, JUANA MUNOZ - Cornell University - New York|
Submitted to: PLoS ONE
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/3/2020
Publication Date: 4/6/2020
Citation: Ucros, J., Panke-Buisse, K. 2020. Bacterial community composition of vermicompost-treated tomato rhizospheres. PLoS One. 10.1371:1-12. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0230577.
Interpretive Summary: The effects of composting of organic matter by worms at the microbial level are unexplored. This work presents new data profiling changes in the microbial community during processing and the effects of finished vermicompost on plant rhizosphere microbiome. The ecological dynamics presented here provide a starting point for producers in intensive systems to better use vermicomposting to their benefit for plant health and growth.
Technical Abstract: Vermicompost is a nutrient rich, effective plant fertilizer and soil amendment made from the ingestion and excretion of organic matter by worms that has been shown to promote plant growth, alter the rhizosphere microbiome, and suppress plant pathogens. These beneficial properties are often attributed to vermicompost-associated microbial activity. The vermicompost investigated combines traditional thermophilic composting and vermicomposting sequentially to eliminate pathogens and reduce production time. The stages of thermophilic/vermi-compost exhibit significant changes in 16s community structure. Vermicompost relies on its microbial component to confer benefits. Exploring the changes in community composition during composting and how the finished product alters rhizosphere microbial communities will provide better understanding and potential for improvement of benefits.