Symborg was invited to take part as a speaker in the 8th International Table Grape Symposium organised by the Universities of Foggia, Palermo and Turin to be held in Italy from 2 to 7 October. As an expert in the use of microorganisms, Félix Fernández, Director of R&D in Symborg, was asked to give a talk presenting the results of various scientific trials performed to assess the effects of mycorrhization of the roots of these plants with Symborg products and the improvements achieved in the crops.
The 8th International Table Grape Symposium is the main international event for the table grape industry. The latest research results are presented on this crop from all points of view: economics and marketing for sale, environment, plant biology and physiology, production techniques and post-harvest processes, genetic resources, disease and pest monitoring, etc. Italy is the main producer of table grapes for Europe and is one of the biggest producers and exporters of this product in the world. That is why it was selected to hold this 8th edition of the symposium. The previous edition took place in Australia in 2014.
Dr Félix Fernández, Director of R&D in Symborg, will be the speaker in a session entitled, Biology & Physiology of Production; Improved Cultural Techniques. Dr Fernández has a degree in microbiology and a doctorate in agricultural sciences from the University of Havana, Cuba. His experience includes over 30 years in the field of mycorrhizae, especially in the use and handling of biofertilizers based on mycorrhizae and other microorganisms. He has performed various trials on the production of inoculants and on the efficacy of AMF (arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi) in intensive and extensive agro-ecosystems and regularly takes part in scientific conferences and all types of meetings on agricultural innovation.
More productive crops
Dr Fernández’s talk will focus on his latest scientific trials on table grapes performed at the public research centre CEBAS-CSIC (Spanish National Research Council Centre for Edaphology and Applied Biology of the Segura). The trial, carried out in a plantation of the Crimson variety of table grape in southeast Spain, consisted in the inoculation of the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF) Glomus iranicum var tenuihypharum var nova over three consecutive years. As Dr Fernández explains, the trial demonstrated that vines inoculated by the Symborg product notably improved their physiological activity. The water status of inoculated plants was improved, they increased their absorption of some nutrients such as phosphorus, potassium and calcium, so they significantly improved their yield and fruit quality.
Panoramic view of vineyards of Crimson grapes during the study. Untreated on the left and treated with Symborg product on the right.
Symborg has developed various products based on the mycorrhizal forming fungus, Glomus iranicum var. tenuihypharum, discovered and patented by the company. This is an arbuscular mycorrhizal forming fungus (AMF) that stimulates the growth of the roots and the productivity of the plants. It can be inoculated through various systems, including drip irrigation, microgranules or seed treatment, and promotes intensive mycorrhizal colonisation that improves plant root development as well as their water and nutrient absorption efficiencies. Symborg’s mycorrhizal species increases physiological activity and therefore improves the yields of the crops and the quality of the fruits.
Dr Fernández explained that scientific trials have also been carried out in various grape varieties: Red Globe and Crimson, with positive results in all cases. Félix Fernández said, “Mycorrhization of table grape vines with Glomus iranicum var tenuihypharum improved the water status of the plants, which significantly increased the yield and the quality of the grapes. Furthermore, it significantly brought forward the harvest, which is a genuine added value from the commercial point of view.”
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