Re: [gardeners] Re: Mycorrhiza questions...

Thomas Giannou (
Mon, 19 Oct 1998 15:55:41 -0700

Regarding soil types,

According to my own experience...  about the only soil type that I know of
that won't work well with mycorrhiza is one that has a high concentration of
clay.  My friends accross the street have been putting a lot of organic
material in their garden for years including cow manuer and composted lawn
clippings.  Their garden was litterally over run with just 5 inoculated
tomato plants.   I tied up their pear tomato plant and it was ten feet wide,
over six feet tall, and three feet thick.  They put mycorrhiza on cucumbers
and a 75 year old neighbor lady said they were the sweetest cucumbers she
had ever tasted.  I haven't tried them.  I built a grape arbor this year and
I think I'll try to grow cucumbers vertically along the side of it that are
inoculated and see what happens with them.

My soil where my raspberries are, is a black loam of about 1.5 feet on top
of a sandy gravel and clay material.  It's good black dirt, but it could
drain faster than it does.  When it comes to Organic farms that use a lot of
chicken manuer, you will find the phosphate level in that stuff is way too
high and the mycorrhiza fungi won't function with plants that have that kind
of environment in the soil.

Don Chapman puts out a plan for forming a good garden suitable for growing
things with Mycorrhiza.  One of these days, I might try out what he
recommends.... it seemed logical and had a lot of Organic material in it.

Best Regards,
Thomas Giannou

-----Original Message-----
From: Marianne Lepa <>
To: <>
Date: Monday, October 19, 1998 3:10 PM
Subject: Re: [gardeners] Re: Mycorrhiza questions...

>I don't know if Bill & Harvey are still on this list, but I do know that
>they experimented with mycorrhiza in Connecticut and found no difference
>between plants grown in soil amended with compost and the fungus, and
>plants grown in soil amended with compost alone.
>I would suspect, as Liz has suggested, that if some people are having
>sucesses with mychorhizza, then it more than likely has to do with their
>particular soil type rather than the fungus alone.  From what I've been
>able to see, the majority of people claiming success by adding mychorrizza
>come from areas that have been grassland or desert for eons. Those of us
>who live parts of the continent that are, or were, known for lumber, seem
>to do well enough without the benefit of adding mychorrizha. I'm not a
>botanist either, but to me, it looks like mixed deciduous forest has more
>benefit than just autumn colour.
>And speaking of compost -- when I moved to this place in May '97, I brought
>along 4 or 5 composting worms from the farm and dropped them into what
>appeared to be a woefully inadequate, township supplied, compost bin. After
>16 months of heavy use, I emptied the composter yesterday and found, not
>only beautiful "chocolate cake" type compost, but billions and billions of
>worms! I kept back a hundred or so to reseed the composter and the rest
>have been put to work out in the veggie garden along with the organic
>matter. :-)
>Does anyone have any suggestions as to what I need to do with
>not-quite-ripe fennel seeds and a below-freezing night coming up this week?
>Southeastern Ontario AgCan zone 5b