Field Trial: X-Tend® Increases Glyphosate Effectiveness

Objective

Over the years, some weeds have developed resistance to common herbicides such as glyphosate. To overcome this hurdle, growers may bump up the rates or add other herbicides or products with different mechanisms/modes of action into the tank mix. Such approaches have had mixed results over the long run and have increased the cost of weed control.

In this study, Huma Gro® X-Tend® was added to a glyphosate product to test the potential for improving the herbicidal efficacy of the product in a cost-effective way. [Read more…]

New Video: 8 Essential Products for Wastewater Bioremediation

In this video, Heather Jennings, PE, Director of Probiotic Solutions®, provides an introduction to 8 essential products for wastewater bioremediation.

Stimulating the growth and development of the correct microbial populations for processing wastewater contaminants has been our core business for over 45 years. In that time, we’ve developed a suite of bioremediation products that are unsurpassed in the industry. The following 8 products are highlighted in the video:

[Read more…]

The Water Break Podcast Hits 4,000 Downloads

This week, our Water Break Podcast reached the milestone of 4,000 downloads. Our fanbase is growing quickly, as it took us 18 episodes and 16 months to reach 3,000 downloads but then only 3 more episodes to reach the 4,000-download mark. The statistics report from Blubrry, our podcast hosting service, has also let us know that we now have listeners in 63 countries. That’s a lot of interest for a podcast devoted to water and wastewater treatment.

While a great deal of the podcast’s success is due to Heather Jennings being such an amazing, hardworking host, we also send a big Thank You to the 35 guests (so far) who have volunteered to provide over 4,000 hours of free education to the water and wastewater community.

Congratulations to everyone who has participated in helping The Water Break Podcast become a growing success!

To view and listen to the 22 podcast episodes, click here or subscribe to The Water Break Podcast through your favorite podcasting service.

JoVE Video Journal Publication: Quantification of Humic and Fulvic Acids

Dr. Richard T. Lamar and Dr. Hiarhi Monda of our Humic Research Laboratory, with assistance from analytical chemist Ryan Fountain, have published a methodology video in the biochemistry section of the peer-reviewed online video journal, JoVE.

The video, Quantification of Humic and Fulvic Acids in Humate Ores, DOC, Humified Materials and Humic Substance-Containing Commercial Products, shows the step-by-step laboratory methodology (the New Standard Method) for gravimetric quantification of humic substances (e.g., humic and fulvic acids) on an ash-free basis, in dry and liquid materials from soft coals (i.e., oxidized and non-oxidized lignite and sub-bituminous coal), humate ores and shales, peats, composts and commercial fertilizers and soil amendments.

In the video introduction, Dr. Lamar states, “The New Standard Method for quantification of humic acids provides a more accurate and precise analysis compared to the existing regulatorily accepted methods, and it also provides a standard method for pure hydrophobic fulvic acid quantification. The advantage of this protocol is that it provides a gravimetric analysis of humic and hydrophobic fulvic acid concentrations on an ash-free basis, and the extraction process has been optimized to obtain the highest recoveries of both humic and fulvic acids from samples.

At the video’s conclusion, Dr. Monda states, “Following this procedure, the dry humic and fulvic acids obtained can be used for characterization purposes, such as the carbon-13 and the proton NMR electron resonance, and the ultrahigh resolution mass spectrometry, among other useful techniques. This can be used for characterization of the humus chemistry, as well as being a useful tool to dig deep into the structure-activity relationship with plant fitness and the underlying plant defense mechanisms.

Direct link to video on the JoVE Website: https://www.jove.com/v/61233/quantification-humic-fulvic-acids-humate-ores-doc-humified-materials (A free subscription will be required to view the entire video on the JoVE Website.)

From the JoVE Website: Filmed at the world’s top scientific institutions, JoVE videos bring to life the intricate details of cutting-edge experiments enabling efficient learning and replication of new research methods and technologies. JoVE is a peer-reviewed scientific video journal that is indexed in PubMed and Web of Science.

March 22 Is National Agriculture Day

National Agriculture Day is celebrated on March 22. This 49th anniversary of National Ag Day is being celebrated in classrooms and communities across the country with a 2022 theme of “Growing a Climate for Tomorrow.”

In a virtual Ag Day event, the Agriculture Council of America (ACA) will bring approximately 100 college students to Washington D.C. to “virtually” deliver the Ag Day message to the Hill. A core leadership team of college students will attend D.C. events in person. There will also be a Celebration of Modern Agriculture on the Mall, and the winner of the ACA’s national Ag Day essay contest will be announced.

These events mark a nationwide effort to tell the true story of American agriculture, to remind citizens that agriculture is a part of all of us. Many agricultural associations, corporations, students, and government organizations involved in agriculture are expected to participate.

The National Ag Day program encourages every American to:

  • Understand how food and fiber products are produced.
  • Appreciate the role agriculture plays in providing safe, abundant and affordable products.
  • Value the essential role of agriculture in maintaining a strong economy.
  • Acknowledge and consider career opportunities in the agriculture, food and fiber industry.

For more information on National Ag Day, visit www.agday.org.  

Here’s a short video highlighting some Farm Facts:

PS Article Published in Tri-State Seminar Proceedings

An article by Heather Jennings, PE, Director of Probiotic Solutions®, has been published in Tri-State Seminars Magazine, the proceedings of the 36th Annual Tri-State Seminar held August 9–12, 2021, in Las Vegas, Nev. Ms. Jennings was a featured presenter at the seminar, which provides training and certification classes to educate water professionals from Arizona, California, and Nevada.

In her presentation and the resulting published article, titled “Lagoons, Under the Surface,” Ms. Jennings discussed the results of an in-depth investigation of bioremediation and biological factors involved in reducing sludge at a municipal wastewater treatment facility lagoon system.

A one-year bioremediation plan was implemented for a municipal wastewater treatment facility with 2 primary lagoons in which sludge depths had reached 5–7 feet. The lagoons were at risk of upset and wastewater processing capacity was reduced. Sludge levels were reported for baseline and quarterly sludge judging, supplemented with ATP and DNA analyses of the microorganism biomass. The results of the ATP and DNA analyses pointed out the often-misunderstood fact that wastewater treatment facility lagoon sludge is not inert: it is the most biologically active layer of the water column and can be efficiently controlled and reduced through proper bioremediation interventions. Sludge depth was biologically reduced by an average of 45%. This represented 17,800 dry tons of sludge that did not need to be mechanically removed and hauled to a disposal location, a potential savings of over $6 million.

The complete article can be found on pp. 28–31 of the 2-2021 issue of Tri-State Seminars Magazine at https://www.kelmanonline.com/httpdocs/files/Tri-State-Seminar/issue2-2021/index.html.

Effects of Humic Substances on Soil Microbes

By Richard Lamar, PhD
Senior Director of Humic Research
Bio Huma Netics, Inc.

Most of the work on agricultural applications of humic substances (HS) has focused on their biostimulant effects on plants. Far less work has been conducted on the effects of HS on soil microbial populations. It’s not surprising to learn, from the few studies that have been published, that HS also stimulate the growth of soil bacteria, even the bacteria that inhabit earthworm digestive tracts. One of the most important discoveries is that many species of soil bacteria are able to grow on humic acid (HA) as their sole carbon source (Tikhonov et al., 2010).

These findings have important implications for the roles played by soil bacterial communities—including those residing in the guts of soil fauna, such as earthworms—in the humification process (i.e., the process of conversion of dead plant tissues to humic substances). This means that these bacteria are consuming HS and modifying HS by metabolizing humic molecules and using the metabolized molecules to produce proteins, fats, and other types of molecules. When the bacteria die, they are in turn consumed by other microbes and those molecules created from metabolized humic molecules wind up being included as HS.

The other important piece of information that has come out of the work on bacterial-HS interactions is that, in addition to being potential carbon sources, HS can also act as soil bacterial growth stimulants or growth regulators (Tiknonov et al., 2010). This was demonstrated in a study in which a number of soil isolated bacterial species were grown on a medium that contained glucose as the carbon source (10 mg/ml) and humic acid (1 mg/ml). Thus, the humic acid was 10X lower than the glucose. Growth of the bacteria on this medium was compared with the growth of bacteria on a medium that did not contain the humic acid. The growth of 41% percent of the bacterial species (these were isolated from earthworm digestive tracts) were stimulated by the inclusion of the humic acid. The authors of the study concluded that, because the concentration of glucose was so high and the increase in available carbon from the addition of 1 mg/ml humic acid was insignificant, the humic acid acted as a growth stimulant to the 41% of bacteria whose growth was increased.

These types of studies have demonstrated that HS can stimulate the growth of plant-growth-promoting rhizobacteria (aka PGPR bacteria, for which the “rhizo” stands for rhizosphere or the area of soil that is intimately associated with plant roots). One of the most well-known PGPR bacteria are Pseudomonads, strains of which have been found to be able to solubilize phosphate, produce siderophores (important for Fe uptake), ammonia, and the plant-growth-regulator auxin (Gupta, 2008; Selvakumar et al., 2009).

REFERENCES

Gupta, A. and M. Gopal. 2008. Siderophore production by plant growth promoting rhizobacteria. Indian J. Agric. Res. 42(2):153–156.

Salvakumar, G., P. Joshi, S. Nazim, P. K. Mishra, J. K. Bisht and H. S. Gupta. 2009. Phosphate solubilization and growth promotion by Pseudomonas fragi CS11RH1 (MTCC8984), a psychrotolerant bacterium isolated from a high-altitude Himalayan rhizosphere. Biologia, 64(2)239-245

Tikhonov, V. V., A. V. Yakushev, Y. A. Zavgorodnyaya, B. A. Byzov, and V. V. Demin. 2010. Effect of humic acids on the growth of bacteria.  European Soil Science, 43 (3):305–313.

BHN Hosts PFAS Training for Water and Wastewater Plant Operators

Bio Huma Netics hosted a 6-hour PFAS training seminar on February 23, 2022. Co-Sponsored by the Rural Water Association of Arizona, the event provided education on the problem of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination in water.

Speakers at the event included Heather Jennings, PE, Director of Probiotic Solutions®, Cathy Swanson, West Regional Sales Manager and Groundwater Remediation Specialist at Purolite, and Marci Payne, Sales and Marketing Director at Legend Technical Services of Arizona. An Operator’s panel discussion was led by Jim Huchel, Wastewater Treatment Manager for the City of Flagstaff, and Henry Cornejo, Wastewater Treatment Program Manager at Rural Water Association of Arizona. Professional Development Hours were awarded to the 27 attendees.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), PFAS are widely used, long lasting manufactured chemicals, components of which break down very slowly over time. Because of their widespread use and their persistence in the environment, many PFAS are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world and are present at low levels in water and a variety of food products. Scientific studies have shown that exposure to PFAS may be linked to a variety of harmful health effects in humans and animals.

The BHN Product Quality Assurance Process

In this video, we show the scientific steps we take to make sure that all our Huma Gro®, Fertilgold Organics®, and Probiotic Solutions® liquid products are built according to specifications, are consistent from batch to batch, and are of the highest quality.

Heather Jennings Is Featured Guest on “Better Together” Podcast

Paper360, a bimonthly magazine for the pulp & paper industry, produces a podcast called “Better Together: Conversations With Innovative Leaders.” At a recent podcast recorded live at SuperCorrExpo in Orlando, Fla., Heather Jennings, Director of Probiotic Solutions and Host of our own Water Break Podcast, was interviewed on the topic of diversity and innovation for the corrugated industry. Heather is Emeritus Chair of TAPPI’s Women in Industry Committee.

The mission of the TAPPI Women in Industry Committee is to “Inspire and support the development of women in the forest products, pulp, paper, tissue, packaging and associated industries by serving as a resource for education and networking opportunities, that result in more women leaders in the industry, fostering overall industry health.”

Here’s a link to the podcast: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1295744/9397632-paper360-better-together-supercorrexpo-live-part-2.

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