Japanese and Dutch researchers use anaerobic method to disinfest soil

June 15, 2020 |

In Japan, scientists in Japan and the Netherlands have independently developed anaerobic soil disinfestation, also known as biological soil disinfestation or reductive soil disinfestation, to kill off pathogenic bacteria, parasitic nematodes and even weeds in soils without using pesticides. By covering the soil with plastic to cut off access to oxygen, unwanted organisms suffocate and do not need to be chemically fumigated.

A research team led by Kazuki Fujita formerly of Shinshu University and Takashi Kunito currently of Shinshu University focused on the phosphorus dynamics and microbial phosphorus acquisition during anaerobic soil disinfestation in andosols. The term ‘andosol’ comes from the Japanese word, ‘an’ which means dark, and ‘do’ which means soil. Japan is lucky in that about half of its landmass is covered in this rich, black, productive soil. However, this soil absorbs phosphorus considerably making it unavailable to plants to use as nutrients. The team at Shinshu University were able to demonstrate that phosphorus can become more available in arable andosols by giving them the anaerobic soil disinfestation treatment.

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Category: Research

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