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Plant Grow System - 4 Steps to Healthier Plants
organic fertilizers,  Frequently Asked Questions
organic fertilizer

Frequently Asked Questions

Below we have listed some of your most frequently asked questions. If you have any additional question or comments please contact us.

FAQ Categories: Agricultural Consultant    General Info    Mycorrhizal Fungi    Neem Oil    Soil Food Web   

Agricultural Consultant

General Info

Mycorrhizal Fungi

Neem Oil

Soil Food Web

Agricultural Consultant
Are agricultural consultants free?
Sometime YES sometimes NO. YES if you contact your local Agricultural Extension Agent and he can answer your question over the phone or you bring your "problem" to the County Agricultural Extension Office for their expert advice. NO if Extension office can't help you then you have to hire a consultant. Back to Top

How can I find an agricultural consultant?
Call your Agricultural Extension Agent and ask for a recommendation, check your local yellow pages or go on line. Back to Top

How much will a consultant cost me?
That will depend on the consultant. Ask what the hourly rate is and if there is a minimum fee. If you require a writen report, ask about the costs. Back to Top

How will I know if an agricultural consultant is qualified?
Ask the consultant about their experience and educational qualifications. Click here to view Al Will's resume. Back to Top

If I hire a consultant, what should I do to prepare for the consultants visit?
Have all of the infomation on what has transpired up until you noticed the problem. Things such as what you have done up until the time you noticed the problem. Keep one fact in mind plants can not lie. Back to Top

Is the expense of an agricultural consultant worth the cost?
What is it worth to you to have your problem solved and what is your peace of mind worth? Only you can make that decision. Back to Top

Just what is an agricultural consultant?
An agricultural consultant is basically a "problem solver". If the plants you are growing are not doing what you want them to do and you can not figure out what is wrong you contact an agricultural consultant. Back to Top

What specific areas does an agricultural consultant cover?
Areas such as:
  1. Plant insect and disease problems
  2. Soil and fertilizer problems
  3. Root problems
  4. Propagation problems
  5. Soil food web problems
  6. Plant growth problems
  7. Blooming problems
  8. Fruiting problems
  9. Production problems
  10. Tree structural problems
  11. Turf problems
  12. Plant selection problems
  13. Planting depth problems
  14. Irrigation problems
  15. Landscape design problems
  16. Pond Problems
  17. Transplanting problems
  18. Landscape maintenance problems
  19. Tree pruning problems
  20. If legal problems arise an expert witness in court
Back to Top

General Info
What are microbes?
Microbes are microscopic organisms such as bacteria, fungi and nematodes. Back to Top

What are mycorrhizae?
The prefix 'myco' means fungus and 'rhiza' means root. Together they refer to a root fungus. Mycorrhizae are beneficial, symbiotic, fungi that are an intregal part of the root system. In nature, more than 98% of all land plants are mycorrhizal. Their function is to absorb nutrients and water for the plant and by competitive exclusion, protect the plant from disease. The plant in turn provides about 40% of the food it makes by photosynthesis to 'feed' the fungus. Back to Top

What are soil pathogens?
Pathogens are diseases. Plants, just like humans, are subject to soil born bacterial and fungal diseases in all stages of growth, from newly germinating seedlings to mature plants. Back to Top

Mycorrhizal Fungi
Do we have to treat the soil in any way to prepare for mycorrhizae?
Continue the same practices you have been using like mulching and fertilizing, but you can cut down on the fertilizing. Back to Top

How does mycorrhizal fungi protect plant roots?
When mycorrhizal fungi is in with the root system of the plant, it's going to protect itself and it's host plant from pathogens such as Pithium or Rhizoctonia. The mycorrhizal fungi form a protective sheath around the plant roots which will not allow the mycelia of pathogens to get in. Back to Top

Is there any competition between the different mycorrhizae in the soil?
No, there are photos of two different species within half a centimeter from each other on the same root. A number of different species of mycorrhizae can be innoculating the one species of plant. Back to Top

What is mycorrhizae?
The word mycorrhizae comes from two words, "Mycor" meaning fungus and "rhizae" meaning root. Mycorrhizae is many different species of beneficial fungi that form a symbiotic relationship with plant roots. 99 percent of the plants in the world have this mycorrhizzal association. Back to Top

What is VAM?
VAM is vesticular arbuscular mycorrhizae. These are all endomycorrhizae. PT, Pisolithus tincorius, is the most acrive one of the ectomycorrhizae group Back to Top

Neem Oil
Are there any precautions that I should take when spraying with K+Neem?
Other than not mixing other products with K+Neem, it is best sprayed in the early morning or late afternoon which helps to increase effectiveness by lengthening drying time. It is also best not to spray when temperatures exceed 85 degrees F. Back to Top

Can I mix K+Neem with other products?
As a general rule NO. Back to Top

How does K+Neem work?
K+Neem is a contact killer with the mode of action being mechanical in nature. The unique blend of potassium salts. which comprise the soap, penetrate the cell wall/membrane of the insect and react with the fats and waxes found in the cuticle that covers the insects exoskeleton. These potassium salts then degrade the cuticle and exoskeleton causing the insect to dry out. When this occurs, the insect can't regulate its metabolic and physiological functions and the insect expires. Back to Top

How often should I spray with K+Neem?
It will depend the severity of the insect problem. Check the next day to see if there are any live pests left, if so spray every 2 to 3 days until the problem is gone. Usually 1 spray is sufficient. Back to Top

Is K+Neem safe for all plants?
There are some sensative plants. Read the label for a list of sensative plants. Back to Top

Is K+Neem safe for the environment and animals like cats and dogs?
Definitely YES. Back to Top

What insects will K+Neem control?
There is a long list on the label. In general, aphids, scale, mites, mealy-bugs, whitefly, cabbage worms, japanese beetles,chinch bugs, mole crickets, lace bugs and stink bugs to name a few. Back to Top

What is K+Neem?
K+Neem is a unique product formulated to provide professional and home applicator with an effective alternative to toxic chemical insecticides. This water-based Alcohol free, non-flamable insecticide is effective on a wide range if insects powdery mildew, and is safe for use on food crops up to the day of harvest. K+Neem is the NATURAL choice for turf, ornamental, agricultural interior and greenhouse crops. K+Neem does not use any solvents in either the extraction or manufacturing process to compromise the integrity of the product Back to Top

What is Neem Oil?
Neem Oil is the natural expressed oil from the seed of the Indian Neem tree. This oil has been used for centuries by the Indians both as a medicinal and insecticidal product Back to Top

What is the dilution rate for K+Neem ?
1 part K+Neem to 50 parts water. 1 quart of dilute spray will cover 110 square feet (100 gallons per acre) Back to Top

What should I know about mixing K+Neem?
First read all directions. K+Neem should be mixed with soft water. If mixed with hard water a scum will form on the surface and may clog the sprayer. If you only have hard water then you can add a water softening product such as Calgon. Don't forget to thoroughly mix concentrate before measuring needed amount. Back to Top

When I spray my yard with K+Neem, how long should I wait to let my animals out?
Just let the grass dry. K+Neem is exempt from the 48 hour notification and is OMRI listed Back to Top

Will K+Neem control fleas and ticks?
Definitely YES. Back to Top

Soil Food Web
Can any common pesticides that I can buy be harmful to the soil food web?
YES. The most harmful common pesticide that many home owners use 'weed and feed' is the most damaging to the soil food web. Do not use any pesticide with Atrazine. Back to Top

Don't I already have a soil food web in my soil?
Maybe yes maybe no. If your home was built in a natural forest, yes. If, as most of us, the building contractor buldozed the natural vegetation to build homes or larger structures, no. When the natural vegetation was destroyed so was the food web. Back to Top

What is the soil food web?
The soil food web is made up of all of the beneficial soil microorganisms that "Mother Nature" has taken millions of years to perfect. They consist of bacteria, mycorrhizae, beneficial nematodes and other microscopic organisms that provide nutrients, water, protection from harmful diseases, heat and cold stress, speed up germination of seed, growth hormones as well as many other functions. Back to Top

When I buy plants from a nursery don't they have a soil food web in the pot?
NO. Nursery grown plants are grown in sterile soil and are produced with chemical fertilizers. That is one of the reasons home owners often have difficulty in getting plants to survive. Back to Top

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