The living soil ? an agricultural perspective

Margaret M Roper, Vadakattu V S R Gupta
2007 Microbiology Australia  
Soils are much more than a porous medium for supporting plant growth. Soils are living, because they contain a wide range of microorganisms including bacteria, fungi, algae, protozoa, nematodes and other fauna including microarthropods, macroarthropods, termites and earthworms. All play a crucial role in the biological function of soils including decomposition of organic matter, nutrient transformations, biological control, development of soil structure to mention a few. Until recently the
more » ... exity of life in the soil has been difficult to unravel, but new DNA and biochemical tools are providing insights into its phenotypic and functional diversity and capability, and should drive the development of managements that nurture biodiversity and ecosystem function.
doi:10.1071/ma07104 fatcat:tzitmekezvfgto4op5rvdr546a