Primer on Biostimulants
Explore biostimulants, finding out what they are—what they aren’t—and what they can do for those in agriculture.
Chances are you’ve heard of biostimulants, but an article on GrowingProduce.com is guessing you may still be a bit unclear about what they are exactly. Explore this primer, gleamed from the details of the article, to get the details on what they are, are not, and how they could help your ag operation, below.
Details of Biostimulants
What they’re not: According to the article, the biostimulant industry is not regulated by the EPA, so there is no universal definition that has been agreed upon. What they are not, however, according to the article, are crop protection products nor fertilizers.
One definition: The article maintains the Biological Products Industry Alliance (BPIA) defines a biostimulant as: “A material that, when applied to a plant, seed, soil or growing media — in conjunction with established fertilization plans, enhances the plant’s nutrient use efficiency, or provides other direct or indirect benefits to plant development or stress response.”
Another definition: The article itself gives this definition: A biostimulant “can help make plants more tolerant to various environmental stressors, including weather, temperatures, drought, and even soil conditions. They can enhance the development of soil microorganisms. Often, these materials can stimulate root growth and aid in a plant’s ability to effectively uptake the nutrients it needs. And with healthier plants you have the potential to improve overall crop quality and harvestable yield. In short, used correctly, these are tools that have the potential to help you grow a higher quality, more profitable crop more efficiently, and possibly more cost-effectively.”
Types of Biostimulants
The article identifies each biostimulant group:
- Acid-based: “Humic and fulvic acids are used to improve soil structure and function, enhance plant nutrition, and contribute to improved crop yield and quality.”
- Seaweed and Plant Extracts: “Seaweed extracts can improve soil structure, water retention, and aeration, as well as help fix or chelate nutrients and improve cation exchange capacity (CEC). They have also been shown to aid in the functioning of beneficial soil microorganisms, and to improve the provisioning, uptake, and utilization of plant nutrients. Improved stress tolerance effects have also been broadly reported.”
- Microbial: “Beneficial fungi and bacteria include a wide variety of microbial products sold as biofertilizers, plant inoculants (to aid primarily in nutrient processing), soil amendments, and other beneficial additives. Microbial products have been shown to enhance plant growth through various direct and indirect mechanisms;”
Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.