|DERITO, CHRISTOPHER - Cornell University
|HAY, ANTHONY - Cornell University
Submitted to: PLOS ONE
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/10/2023
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Historical investment is underway for the domestic fertilizer production as the countermeasure for rising costs. This study shows the ability of agricultural byproduct to improve the quality (yield of edible parts) of cash crop, soybeans. This benefit originated from unique consortium of microorganisms having probiotic effects. Proposed renewable fertilizer offers added benefits of symbiosis (plant root-microbe interactions) without artificial manipulation of organic byproducts from raw sugar production factories in the Souther U.S.
Technical Abstract: A fertilizer production expansion program is currently underway for the domestic production of controlled-release, compost-based, and microbe-enhanced fertilizers as a part of rural development in the United States. Sugarcane mill mud is a sterilized (90 °C) and abundant agricultural byproduct that has received interest as a soil amendment in several southern US states, because of its high phosphorus and organic carbon contents. Addition of mill mud to sandy loam significantly increased nodule formation compared to fertilized and unfertilized controls. Mill mud addition also resulted in pod yields similar to the fertilized control. Though not found in mill mud itself, mill mud additions correlated with an increase in soil Rhizobia as determined by deep 16S rRNA gene sequencing. We hypothesize that Firmicutes in sterilized mill mud induced Rhizobia that in turn enhanced soybean growth. Collectively, these results demonstrate that mill mud enhances plant growth promoting bacteria when applied to mineral soils, although the relative influence of mill mud-derived bacteria, organic carbon, and nutrients needs further investigation.