The Science

Understanding the soil

Micro-nutrients: The Micro-nutrients found in humates, such as calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron and manganese, among others are very important in the development and growth of plants. They are needed in small quantities, but are necessary for plant health, growth, metabolism and synthesis.

Impact of micro-nutrient deficiency in crop production is most commonly measured as loss of crop yield. However, for a range of crops, effects of micro-nutrients on crop quality such as oil, protein or fiber content, absence of defects, and storage longevity are important for the price of agricultural products in markets. In other cases, low symbiotic nitrogen (N) fixation by legumes is the main impact of low amounts of micro-nutrients in cropping systems. Low micro-nutrient levels in seed for planting are having large unrecognized impacts on the costs of crop production and low levels in consumed foods are contributing to the high global levels of micro-nutrient deficiencies in humans.

How important is naturally occurring nitrogen fixing? Biological nitrogen fixation is an essential natural process that supports life on earth concerning the environment, energy, nutrition, and agricultural sustainability. The heavy use of chemical fertilizers containing nitrogen, often employed for increasing crop productivity, result in leaching of nitrates which at high levels pose a health hazard to humans and wildlife. Furthermore, when soils become anaerobic, nitrate (NO3) is reduced to nitrous oxide (N2O), which is over 300 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2) as a potential greenhouse gas.

Humates are the backbone of healthy soil. They promote the growth of beneficial microbes and give the soil the proper compaction, cation exchange capacity, and the ability to retain water and nutrients while making them readily available to plants.

The Science of SumaGrow

When you use IOA SumaGrow, the mineral/scale barrier – known as the “bowl effect” or “mineral bowl” – is dissolved which enables the root cilia to expand further into the soil. The rigorous and maximized efficiency of the root system promotes healthier and greater yielding plant growth.

IOA SumaGrow goes way beyond the typical definition of eco-friendly of not harming the environment. In addition to NOT using harmful chemicals, the product rehabilitates the soil, making the soil healthier and is highly compatible with sustainable farming. IOA SumaGrow will enhance the soil‘s ability to naturally remediate existing soil contaminants, improve its water retention capacity, improve its chelating abilities to prevent the leeching and runoff of pesticides and other chemical applications, and improve the soil‘s organic mass for sustainable production of plant life.

IOA SumaGrow is a broad spectrum product, capable of working on a variety of plants, including legumes, non-legumes, vegetables, cereals, ornamentals, and fodder crops, in a variety of environments, such as high and low pH, wet and dry soil, and in relatively cold, temperate and hot climates. In layman‘s terms, SumaGrow is the equivalent of the Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines, ready to fight whatever battle in whatever conditions it encounters.

IOA SumaGrow is made from multiple strains of cultivated, not genetically modified, microbes. IOA SumaGrow is the most complete product on the market, with at least six functions per product, and multiple strains per function. Actually, IOA SumaGrow would be more correctly referred to as a perfect food since it contains (or has the ability to produce or mobilise) vitamins, minerals and adjusts its own environment by correcting the pH and allowing greater efficiency in water utilization. Although there is significant overlap among the functional areas, the microbes are internally grouped into functional areas. While some of the functional areas require an advanced understanding of agronomics and molecular biology, we will discuss a key functional area here: nitrogen fixing.

Nitrogen Fixing Bacteria in IOA SumaGrow extract nitrogen from the air and soil & transfer it in a form plants can absorb. They are a key component of this microbial product. There are nitrogen fixing bacteria strains in our basic product for leguminous crops; strains for cereal crops such as rice, wheat and corn, and certain forage grasses; strains associated with sugarcane, sorghum and maize; and strains associated with a range of crops such as rice and maize. There are also microbes from other functional areas which work synergistically to fix nitrogen. There are strains which work in aerobic and anaerobic conditions; strains which work in acidic conditions and strains which work in alkaline conditions. So, one functional area of SumaGrow has multiple strains of microbes which work on multiple crops in multiple environments.

Liquid Humates: IOA SumaGrow utilizes liquid Humates as the carrier for the microbes. Humates are an essential carbon source for soil microbes. Humic acid (an extract of humates) is rich in organic matter with a high water-holding capacity and provides a nutritive medium for growth of Rhizobia and other bacteria and fungi. Humic acid helps in building up of soil humus and enhances the natural processes, such as microbial activity which can be sustained over a long period of life.

Humate derivatives are mixtures of humic acid, ulmic acid and fulvic acid. They are products of organic matter transformations by the soil microorganisms. Organic matter is the source of energy and food supply for microbes, which allows IOA SumaGrow to ship its microbial formulations as a liquid since the humates provide a food source for the microbes. Additionally, humic acid derivatives have several known benefits to agriculture, such as increasing seed germination (greater and more rapid), improving trace element nutrition through chelation, and improving moisture conditions.

The benefit that most producers seek from using micro-nutrient fertilizers is an increase in income due to increased yield or quality of harvested products. However, in the most severely deficient soils, the application of micro-nutrient fertilizer ( as found in IOA SumaGrow ) makes the absolute difference between being able to use land productively for crop production, or not.

Polymicrobial Formulations: IOA SumaGrow delivers the ability to greatly increase crop productivity allowing less dependence on petrochemical fertilizers and alleviates negative health and environmental consequences associated with their use.

Digging Deeper

Pictorial Summary