I use mycorrhizal inoculant in my organic garden almost every time I plant and seed. I wouldn’t plant without it.

Over 95% of plant species form symbiotic relationships with mycorrhizal fungi. The fungi provide nutrients and water to their host plants in exchange for carbohydrates and other goodies.

In fact, many plants will trade more than 50% of their carbohydrates with these fungi and other microbes.

Mycorrhizal fungi greatly improve soil characteristics, and are among the most important microbes that form relationships with plants.

Click for video transcription

This transcription will have some mistakes because it is partially automated.

Hey guys! It’s Phil from smilinggardener.com and I’m sitting here in front of the veggie garden and today I’m gonna be talking about mycorrhizal inoculant. I’m sitting really close here, because as you’ll see in a minute the inoculants is very small and I wanna show you exactly how it works.

So mycorrhizal fungi are special, are kinda of special kind of fungi that form a relationship with plants, a symbiotic relationship where they help each other out and actually over 95% of plants form this relationhip with fungi and what happen is the fungi, they effectively, what they do is they attach to the root system of the plants and even go right inside the roots and then they effectively extend that roots system of the plant because the fungi can go much further out to the soil; and get water and nutrients, nitrogen especially phosphorus and some of the heavier, some of the nutrients that the roots have a hard time getting out of the soil.

And the in return for that favor the plants will give a lot of carbohydrate or sugars and vitamins and enzymes and all kinds of living substances, food through the fungi, so it’s this exchange that occurs and plants will give over 50% of the carbohydrates that they make to the fungi and to other microorganisms that do things for them in the soil.

So, you know mycorrhizal fungi they’re another of these microbes that I talked about that we should have in our soil I mean they’re fairly ambiguous in nature, but in our soil they’re often not there because we, if we’ve been tilling, if our soil is compacted, if we haven’t allowed a lot of organic matter to be recycle in there. You know freezing pesticides, chemical fertilizers; if we’ve been withholding water from the landscape like for using drip irrigation.

All kinds of human activities you know can drastically decrease the health and abundance of mycorrhizal fungi in our soil and so it’s a good idea to bring it back in.

There are a couple different kinds, there’s the main kind is called endomycorrhizal fungi, it’s also called arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi; and it’s over, over 90% of species of plants form a relationship with this kind of fungi. So that’s gonna be your, most of your vegetables and grasses and a lot of trees are gonna form that relationship.

There’s also another one called ectomycorrhizal fungi, the endo actually goes right inside, not only inside the plant root, but inside the cells of the plants where is the ecto doesn’t go inside the cell or that’s what I remember about it. The ecto is about maybe, maybe 5% of plants quite a few coniferous trees, evergreen trees and some deciduous trees as well.

So what I often like to do is if I’m gonna be seeding like a big lawn area, I might just go for the endo. But if I’m gonna be seeding a lawn and vegetables and trees, I’ll pay the extra, when I sold this stuff it was about an extra 10% for an endo-ecto blend, so that’s why I usually recommend you go with and you can get that you know from like the Organic Gardener’s Pantry which I used to run that just in Canada.

In the US, I actually found the good brand on a- Amazon, you know it’s starting to become a bigger thing now. It’s been around for awhile but it’s starting to become more well known, so you should be able to find it in a garden center, too.

So when you wanna apply it, you know the ideal time to have this stuff applied is in the nursery when they grow it, but that’s often not happen, usually not happening its started to happen a little more.

But generally, we’re gonna have to do it with ourselves and the best time to do that is when you, when you plant, because you want this to form you, you want this getting contact with the roots of the plants. And so the best time to do that is when you actually have access to the roots.

So I’m gonna show you today just how I would do with seeds, because seed need it too, just to keep the video short I’m not gonna show all the different ways you can do it. But once I get that smilinggardener academy up and running, I’ll show you how to apply it to plants you know, plants and also into the existing garden.

Today, so I have some beans, beans are just one of the many kinds of vegetables that are gonna form the relationship. Actually, almost many vegetables do, there are some that don’t and what I’ll do is put a list down below or if your not on my blog, I’ll put a link down below, you can have on the blog and then I’ll show you the vegetables that you don’t need to apply the fungi with.

So here are some beans, I picked the beans because it’s big enough for me to show you; and here is some mycorrhizal fungi powder, I have it in a powdered form. I always tended, I just sold the powered form because it goes through a sprayer as well and sometimes its use for a product for the sprayer.

You can also get it more in granules, I like the powder and it’s purely its helpful coz the powder you can rub right on to the plant roots or rub on to the seed. So all I would do is I would follow the instructions for how much you need to used it depends on how much the kind you buy.

But I, I would take all my seeds and I just have in a jar something and I just rub them all to the fungi. All you need is a little bit fungi to get on there. I doubt you can see that. Yeah! You could see that. That’s coated, I mean that’s plenty, all you need is a little bit.

Another thing that I would do those, I tend to soak my seeds overnight before I plant them, not so much bean seeds like humus, I’ve learned that you don’t really want to soaked them for too long. But most seeds that I do soaked them in a mixture of kelp and water and usually sea minerals, I’ll talk about that in other time.

But here are some that I, I just soaked, and I put that in there. It really sticks really nicely. So usually I’m putting mycorrhizal fungi on to something that’s been soaked.

I don’t have a, I don’t a plant to show you today because it’s the middle summer and that’s the other reason, I’m not gonna show you our plant it, but if I did, if I had to say a little basal or something I’ll take it out from its pot and I’ll just rub a- like half a teaspoon of this stuff onto the roots. I don’t have to cover the whole roots as long as you get a little bit of the roots, there are hundred of thousands of spores, you know in a pound of this, of this stuff.

So like, I’m gonna have thousand or hundreds or thousand of spores here and just rub that on the roots and your good to go.

I think that’s all I wanna talk about to you today, I know I can get a lot more into this in the academy when I have more time and but I—I think that’s good for now. So, if you want to, if you wanna see which vegetables you don’t need to use this with you can go check it out on the blog.

While you’re there you can signed up for my 15 Vital Lessons for Becoming a Better Organic Gardener which are these 15 Lessons that I thought that really cool when I was first learning about organic gardening.

So I give those away for you free, you can get those right on the main page and that’s all for now about mycorrhizal inoculant. So I’ll see you next week.

This is another of those microbes that should be in our soil, but often isn’t anymore. In soil that has been tilled, compacted, water logged, treated with chemicals, or left without plant cover, mycorrhizal fungi may be seriously lacking.

They aren’t present in imported topsoil or potting soil mix either, and don’t multiply in compost. In any of these scenarios, they need to be added back to the soil, especially when planting or seeding, as they’re essential to optimum plant health.

We can inoculate our plants with mycorrhizal inoculant by taking just a small bucket of soil from a healthy environment that contains the right fungi, or by buying mycorrhizal fungi products from a garden center or online.

While the first method sounds like more fun to me, I’ve always gravitated to the second because I know what I’m getting.

Types Of Mycorrhizal Inoculant

There are two main categories of mycorrhizal fungi. Over 90% of plants form relationships with endomycorrhizal fungi, also called arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.

You need them for most of your vegetables, grasses and many ornamentals.

About 5% of plants, including many conifers and some deciduous trees, form relationships with ectomycorrhizal fungi.

When you’re planting a mix of plants, you can often buy a mixture of endomycorrhizal and ectomycorrhizal fungi and just use that for everything.

How To Apply Mycorrhizal Spores

The best time to apply mycorrhizal inoculant is at the nursery during the plant production stage, but since your plants probably didn’t have that done, the next best time is at planting/seeding/sodding.

This will allow you to establish contact between the fungi and plant roots, which is important because that’s where the relationship occurs.

There’s no benefit to foliar feeding with mycorrhizal fungi, as they need to touch the roots. We can, however, mix them with biostimulants before application. Mycorrhizal products shouldn’t need to be applied more than once to each plant, unless your management practices are harming them.

Rub the fungi directly on the root ball if possible, or sprinkle in the planting hole.

For seed, mix it dry with the seed before spreading.

For sod, get a powder form of the fungi, mix with water, and spray it on the soil right before you lay the sod, or even better, right on the bottom of the sod. You could spray it on afterwards as well and water it down to the root zone.

While not as good, the other choice is to apply the product to existing landscapes. The powder form is best for mixing with water to get the spores to infiltrate into the soil.

For turf, it’s better to do this right after aerating so more of the spores get down to the roots. Otherwise, it can be watered in, but will not be as effective on heavy clay or very compacted soils.

Vegetable Plants That Don’t Use Mycorrhizal Fungi

There are some plants that generally do not form relationships with mycorrhizal fungi. The most important for vegetable gardeners is the Brassicaceae family:

  • broccoli
  • brussels sprouts
  • cabbage
  • cauliflower
  • collards
  • kale
  • mustard
  • rutabaga

… and members of the Amaranthaceae family:

  • beets
  • swiss chard
  • lamb’s quarters
  • quinoa
  • spinach
  • purslane
  • amaranth

So that’s the basics of how to use mycorrhizal inoculant. Any questions? Have you used it before? Let me know below.

Or check out my more detailed mycorrhizae article.


  1. Bill on August 6, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    Great presentation Phil! I recently bought a product called ‘Myke’ (or Mike?) but it seemed more like peat moss. I am wondering if this brand has only a little bit of actual Mycorrhizal fungi with lots of peat moss as a filler? 

    • Phil on August 6, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      Myke is not bad. The carrier is necessary to help with application, so I don’t think you need to worry about two much filler with that brand.

    • Lynne on January 22, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      Myke is the only commercially available source of micorrhizae in Canada. The spores are nearly invisible to the eye, so they mix it with a sterile “filler” for application purposes. Don’t use it like fertilizer… you only need a couple of spoonfuls to plant a tree. 

  2. shizzoberry on September 11, 2011 at 12:58 am

    should it be used during flowering stage to? or just seedling & veg?Ive been wondering if i should be adding it to my flower nute mix?i have been,& i dont notice any problems but?  what ya think? 

    • Phil on September 12, 2011 at 11:04 am

      If it wasn’t used during planting/seeding, it can be used any time after, including during flowering. There’s no need to use it every time you fertilize, but it doesn’t hurt.

    • Lynne on January 22, 2012 at 3:06 pm

      Keep in mind that mycorrhiza is a living organism. It only grows when it makes contact with plant roots. The fungi provides the plant with nutrients, and the plant provides the fungi with carbohydrates from photosynthesis (since the fungi cannot photosynthesise.)Don’t waste your money by applying it like a fertilizer. It must be applied to the roots. For established perennials, trees and shrubs you may cause damage by trying to apply it at the root zone; disturbing the soil will kill any fungi that are already growing there. For annuals and vegetables, it”s best to apply it at planting time when the roots are already exposed. 

      • Phil on January 23, 2012 at 12:52 pm

        You’re right Lynne, but the very fine powders can be watered in to established gardens unless your soil is very compacted – no soil disturbance necessary.

  3. Mike on December 10, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Phil, I have been using Myke when planting outside with great results, is the fungi effective in a aquaponics set up where there is no soil in the growing media (after germination). Also your thoughts on aquaponics, any good sites about set up and equipment etc.?

    • Phil on December 11, 2011 at 2:02 am

      I don’t know much about aquaponics, except that fungi are helpful.

  4. Allen on February 19, 2012 at 7:48 pm

    Hi Phil, You suggested that Plant Success Granular Mycorhizae Inoculant is probably okay since you’ve determined who manufactured the mycorrhizal spores. What I am unclear on is how to apply this since it is not a powder. I am guessing I need to till it in. Is that accurate?What would the application rate be for applying to the soil before planting if you have any ideas? Can’t tell from the amazon listing and need to determine how much to buy.We are in SC and will plant a wide variety of vegetables from seed. Doesn’t seem as though I’ll be able to assure contact with each seed using the soil-mixing method and seems like I’ll need to use more product. Nevertheless I don’t see any other options on Amazon and I’m also not finding any organic gardening centers in this area.What are your thoughts if you would?Thanks!Allen

    • Phil on February 20, 2012 at 5:51 pm

      Hi Allen, if you’re applying during seeding, you could incorporate it into the soil or it might be much easier just to mix it with the seed before seeding. You don’t need to have it contact each seed, just be in the general vicinity in the soil. The roots will find it, so there’s really nothing to worry about there. Go to plant-success.com for application rates for that particular brand.

    • Phil on February 20, 2012 at 6:02 pm

      Hi Allen, if you’re applying during seeding, you could incorporate it into the soil or it might be much easier just to mix it with the seed before seeding. You don’t need to have it contact each seed, just be in the general vicinity in the soil. The roots will find it, so there’s really nothing to worry about there. Go to plant-success.com for application rates for that particular brand.

  5. Elias on April 16, 2012 at 7:31 am

    Hi Phil,I’m very much new to this, so forgive me if this is a silly question… You list some plants which do not form relationships with mycorrhizal fungi. Is that to say they don’t care wether or not they are there, or would they benefit from not having it in the soil at all?

    • Phil on April 16, 2012 at 12:28 pm

      Hi Elias, I’ve never seen evidence of any effect. My understanding is that the fungi don’t substantially help them or hurt them.

    • Tim Turner on March 12, 2022 at 3:26 pm

      It is best not to have any mycorrhizal near them. It can inhibit their growth. Best to plant these in another separate part of your garden.

      • Phil on March 16, 2022 at 8:58 pm

        We’ve asked a couple of soil scientists about this over the years and they weren’t aware of any effect at all, but if you have some info on this, please let me know, Tim. Thanks!

  6. Tulsi on August 4, 2012 at 8:54 pm

    Hi Phil,Thanks for the great info.  I have an allotment garden since last summer, and don’t know what the former gardeners planted where.  Last year I lost all my tomatoes except a ‘wild tomato’ to late blight.  Now all my tomato plants again have late blight (at least i got to harvest a few first this summer).  All the neighboring plots also have it, including some who have their tomatoes in ‘houses’.  I was thinking of giving up on tomatoes… until I heard of a product containing ‘Trichoderma harzianum’ which is meant to form a symbiotic relationship with tomatoes and prevent late blight.  However it costs 70 euro, and comes only in a 1 kilo package (at least what i can find in germany…)Have you heard of or have any experience with this fungus? The company that sells it says it needs to be reapplied every year – but most germans turn their soil every year.  Do some fungus’s get killed by winter?

    • Phil on August 6, 2012 at 7:50 pm

      Trichoderma can be useful, but I would take more of a holistic approach instead of just adding one species. If you can get your soil healthy, the blight won’t cause problems. Quality compost will help, and a straw mulch, as well as regular applications of aerated compost tea during blight season. And then – it’s too advanced to explain here, but I would test your soil with a good organically-minded lab and get the soil fertility balanced out. Blight is partially a phosphorus deficiency in the soil, so if you can get your hands on some rock phosphate, that will help.

    • Gabor Simic on January 5, 2018 at 4:45 am

      In the UK, we have a company that sells Trichoderma in smaller quantities. Try The Nutrient Company (TNC). They also trade on Amazon. I’ve found their products work well.
      Best of luck

  7. Lexi Rodrigo on October 24, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    Hi Phil, Do mycorrhizal fungi form relationships with weeds?

    • Phil on November 2, 2012 at 4:28 pm

      Actually many weeds do not form the relationship, so they often thrive on mycorrhizal-deficient soils when the plants you’re trying to grow don’t.

  8. Mukluk on December 1, 2012 at 2:06 am

    Hi Phil,I have been trying to find out for some time but no one seems to know the answers. If I innoculate a perennial vegetable such as garlic with mychorizae, is it likely that the fungi will survive when I dig up the bulbs dry them and then grow again when I replant the bulb? If I post the bulbs to a friend is it likely that the fungi symbionts will also be posted with the bulb and innoculate the garden it is planted into?Also, will sulphur damage mycorrhizae? I have a pH issue and am undecided if I should use sulphur or not for fear of damaging the fragile fungi in the soil.

    • Phil on December 4, 2012 at 1:24 pm

      My understanding is that the mycorrhizal fungi may very well survive when dug up/replanted and when sent to your friend. There could be some dormant propagules that will break dormancy when the plant is actively growing again. Of course, it probably depends on the health of the fungi in the first place, and certainly on the environmental conditions during storage/transit.Sulfur can harm most microorganisms. You don’t want to manage pH anyway. Get a good, organic soil test done by a lab and manage the nutrients. If indeed you need sulfur and want to take it easier on your microbes, don’t apply to much. It may be best to apply no more than 2 pounds per 1000 square feet, and then focus on improving the biology to make that sulfur as bioavailable as possible.

      • Mukluk on December 6, 2012 at 4:32 am

        Thanks for the info Phil. I thought that may be the case but have had no one to ask since I studied mycology over ten years ago. The difference mychorizae makes is amazing, especially when it is applied after a bush fire has been through.Do you buy inoculate each year or is there some way that you can make your own innoculant? Would it be possible to innoculate a potted plant and trim the roots each year to use to other gardens? I assume that if this worked you would use the root trimmings strait away and would not store them.

        • Phil on December 12, 2012 at 4:25 pm

          You can make your own inoculant, but it’s a bit of work to do well and I’ve always been happy to just buy it every year or 2. It is possible to inoculate a potted plant and use the roots (that’s how some inoculants are made), but unless you’re lab testing or using a microscope, you don’t really know how well those fungi are thriving in there. It would be a fun experiment, but to ensure results, I buy.

  9. Brian Michael Shea on March 22, 2013 at 1:52 am

    I was wondering, is there a difference in fungi that is used according to climate? I mean will the same product work in South Florida(where I live) as in Canada, or anywhere else for that matter? Or are different brands with different species of fungi used for different places?Also, if I were to use an innoculant on a newly made bed, would I just broadcast it and work it into the soil, or should it be applied to each plant as it is planted?

    • Phil on March 25, 2013 at 1:35 pm

      Many of the main fungi are prevalent all over the world, so the same product does work everywhere.If you are planting very densely, you could work it into the whole soil, but I prefer applying to each plant, and mixing it with seeds. Saves a lot of product.

  10. tom on August 10, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    Would you also use it in planting garlic?. Powder each clove as you plant it?

    • Phil on August 12, 2013 at 3:36 pm

      Yes, but I’d just put the cloves in a pile and sprinkle the powder on all of them at once. And actually I quickly soak them in a mixture of kelp and/or sea minerals and water first.

  11. Cindy Ethridge on March 13, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    Hi Phil. I am planting in straw bales and buckets this year. Do you think the micorrhizae would still be beneficial ?

  12. Gary on July 31, 2014 at 4:53 am

    Hello Phil… I live on Oahu in Hawaii. Everything that is sold here is shipped in containers on a barge and the container can get very hot in the sun. Can the Mycorrhizal spores survive in heat for a few days of shipping or am I buying a dead product?

    • Phil on August 3, 2014 at 7:14 pm

      Hi Gary, I wrote the guy who’s in charge of growing my mycorrhizal spores and here’s what he said. Hope it helps:”Hi Phil, the spores are pretty durable. The threshold is around 140 f when they are damaged. I would think they are ok on the barge, although I am not sure how hot it gets.”

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  14. rod on April 7, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    Since rutabaga don’t form micorrhizal relationship what about turnips

    • Phil on April 8, 2017 at 8:43 am

      Nope, no brassica family plants form the relationship.

  15. Luna on June 6, 2017 at 11:00 pm

    Hi! I was wondering if you had suggestions on the exact amount of mycorrhizae to use. If you could give me a measurement in number of grams per gallon plant, that would be wonderful. If you can’t thats also fine.
    (I’m doing a science experiment on mycorrhizae and I need to have exact measurements. I couldn’t really find any answers online.)

    • Phil on June 9, 2017 at 12:35 pm

      It depends on which product you’re using, as they all have different spore counts, and probably other factors that influence application rate.

  16. Becky Scasta on January 13, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    I have a blackberry orchard of about 75 plants that are about 5 years old. They’ve never done well or established great but small growth comes back every year. I have a powdered form of mycorrhizal and would like to apply it to the base of each plant then cover with mulch. Does it matter what time of year I do it? I want to do it now but want to make sure there wasn’t a better time. Another question: Does it matter if it is mixed with city water or does it need to be aerated/dechlorinated? Thanks!

    • Phil on January 15, 2018 at 8:07 am

      Hi Becky, I’m not sure where you’re located, but I’d apply it after all freezing temps is done. And I always try to use dechlorinated water when possible.

  17. Pepper on March 24, 2018 at 12:44 pm


    I am confused, because based on what I have seen, there is just straight-up “Mycorrhizal fungi” as in the brand “Xtreme” (is that a good brand, btw?) and then there is the “inoculant powder” which seems to come in smaller quantities. Is the inoculant powder meant to be multiplied…. if so, how??

    • Phil on March 26, 2018 at 12:16 pm

      Mycorrhizal fungi can come in powder or granular form (among others). The powder is often used when people want to apply it through a sprayer, while the granular is more often used just thrown into the planting hole, but both work well. What’s most important is the quality of the product. I’m not sure about the Xtreme brand – I’ve never analyzed it.

  18. Mahboubeh on April 29, 2018 at 4:25 am

    I want to use Mycorrhizal fungi for tomato seedlings
    Is this possible?

    • Phil on May 1, 2018 at 5:44 pm

      Absolutely. Tomatoes benefit from the relationship.

  19. mahboubeh on May 4, 2018 at 1:15 pm

    thank you
    Do you think which method is better
    Rubbing mycorrhiza to the root and then transferring to the garden
    Or pouring mycorrhiza in a pits

  20. john p. daniel on October 15, 2018 at 3:02 am

    hello phil,

    just wondering if these fungi are beneficial to strawberry plants? to expound on that when strawberry plants fruit it supplies sugar/ brix to the strawberries hence making it sweet, however to my shallow understanding, the plants also give carbs and sugar to the fungi as a form of symbiotic relationship, would this then be tantamount to less sugar/ brix made available to the strawberry fruits?

    Thank You Very Much


    • Phil on October 15, 2018 at 7:07 pm

      Yes, the plants give food to the fungi, but then the fungi give food and water to the plants in return. The plants are much better off for it and their brix will go up. And yes, strawberries do form this relationship with mycorrhizal fungi 🙂

      • John Felix P Daniel on October 17, 2018 at 8:06 am

        much appreciated!

        Thank You Very Much

  21. M J Giere on May 18, 2019 at 10:12 pm

    does chlorinated water from a hose damage the fungi?

    • Phil on May 22, 2019 at 6:33 pm

      In my view, it’s probably not ideal, but the manufacturer says it’s okay.

  22. Abbi on September 7, 2019 at 3:33 pm

    Do you think mycorrhizae impedes the growth of Brassicas, or is it just neutral?

  23. Travis Fletcher on October 22, 2019 at 11:57 am

    Hi Phil,
    It’s hard to find information online about all the different species of mycorrhizae within the endo & ecto spectrums. Focusing on the endo side for vegetable gardening, most products out there are 100% Glomus Intraradicies species of mycorrhizae for their ingredients. However other products (IE. Root Rescue brand) contain 9 different species of Endomycorrhizae fungi (and 9 of etco but irrelevant for vegetable plants).

    Are we aiming for quantitative spore counts applied of Glomus Intraradicies species to the roots of our vegetable gardens, or is it better to focus on the diversity of fungi species for vegetable plants with a product like root rescue instead and let the species join with the host and multiply on their own? I’m confused why this information is so hard to find online since mycorrhizae is so heavily studied. It makes a BIG difference in product choices if we should be applying a diversity of potential endomycorrhizae to our vegtable/fruit/flower gardens!


    • Phil on October 22, 2019 at 7:15 pm

      It is a confusing topic. here’s what I wrote on my main mycorrhizae page, which isn’t much help (here’s the link):

      “A point of controversy in the mycorrhizal inoculant world is diversity of species. Some people contend that G. Intraradices is really the only endomycorrhizal species you need, while others claim that a diversity of several endo species is better because each of them will do better in certain conditions with certain plants.

      The latter has always made sense to me, because more diversity is usually better in nature, but after a lot of reading into this, I believe it’s not as important as you might think.

      G. Intraradices is the important one. If a product has a few other species, as mine does, that’s probably a good thing, but not too big of a deal.”

  24. David Schneider on October 25, 2019 at 9:53 am

    For planting garlic cloves, I’m guessing it is best to put some mycorrhizae in the planting hole so when the garlic starts to root in the fall before the ground freezes so it gets the benefits rather than doing a soak of the garlic cloves and then planting in the ground. Or am I wrong?

    • Phil on October 29, 2019 at 5:07 pm

      Good question. I’m not sure it would make much difference.

  25. David S Schneider on November 1, 2019 at 3:58 pm

    OK, how about a slightly different scenario. Do you think there would be a difference putting some mycorrhizae into the planting hole or dampening the root plate (area the roots of the close grow from once in the ground) and dipping the end of the clove into mycorrhizae?

    • Phil on November 3, 2019 at 1:39 pm

      It seems a little more likely for the spores to be in the right place if you put them directly on the clove rather than into the soil.

  26. Paula Smith on May 27, 2020 at 11:53 am

    Hi, Phil-
    I am new to using these products. I am planting more natives in my yard and purchased the soluble form of Plant Success, as they were already in the ground. After using it once, they looked great. I contacted the company to find out how often to use it- they replied could use it as often as I wanted, as it does not hurt the plant, and just adds more of the spores. After a second application, several of the new plants (not the established ones I used it on..) have turned slightly yellow, and some have a slight purple tinge to the leaf edges (which I understand through reading that it could indicate low phosphorous). I have very heavy clay soil, but amended the planting areas with topsoil and mushroom compost. Could the mychorrhizae be causing the yellowing?

    • Phil on May 29, 2020 at 5:26 pm

      No, it almost certainly won’t be that product. You may have a phosphorus deficiency, though, whether temporarily due to cold weather or long-term due to insufficient soil phosphorus. That said, although purple is often taught as phosphorus deficiency, it’s not really that clear cut. Other deficiencies can lead to purple leaves, which is why soil and plant tissue testing are important, although I undestand – many home gardeners don’t want to get into that much detail.

  27. Mildred on June 20, 2020 at 9:27 pm

    Does anybody know particular tomatoes that work exceptionally well with myco, if at all any?

    • Phil on June 23, 2020 at 6:29 pm

      They should all benefit from Myco but I’m not aware of any that benefit more than others.

  28. Mary on April 1, 2021 at 5:33 pm

    Thank you for the information so far. We planted a rose bush in the place where I know a rose bush flourished when I was a child. It’s never done very well, with insects eating away at the leaves. Would the rose bush benefit from an application of mycorrhizal fungi? If so, how should it be applied?

    • Phil on April 3, 2021 at 12:24 pm

      Hi Mary, roses often struggle when planted in the same spot as a previous rose. It even has a name, “rose sickness.” It’s conceivable that mycorrhizal fungi could help, as could Bio Ag, but it’s hard to say for sure. If you do try the fungi, you can dissolve 2 teaspoons in some water and water the soil around the plant. And of course, you can do the same with other plants in the garden, too. More info here.

  29. Joanne Pomerantz on May 11, 2021 at 9:43 pm

    Phil – I use BioCoat Gold from AEA on my vegetables, but I also grow a great many dahlias. Would it help to dust the tubers with this inoculant before planting them?.

    • Phil on May 14, 2021 at 9:56 am

      It’s a little concerning that the product contains 90% “inert ingredients.” I would want to know what that means. But the ingredients they do list – seaweed, calcium, humic acids, and microbes – would all be useful for tubers. Just don’t overdo it.

  30. Susan on April 10, 2022 at 3:11 pm

    Hi Phil –
    I bought a product called Myco Seed Treatment from Fedco Seeds, but it came without instructions. I’ve run across your site in my search for how to use it. It’s a blend of microorganisms and mycorrhizal fungi , but I can’t find out how much to use – when planting seed, or young plants. Any advice?

    • Phil on April 11, 2022 at 6:16 pm

      On their website, they say basically nothing about what’s in it. They do say “1–2 oz treats 100# of potato seed pieces, 4–8 oz/100# of other seed.”

  31. Susan on April 10, 2022 at 5:27 pm

    Hi Phil – I am wondering if there is an equally beneficial inoculant that you would recommend for cabbage family and beet family plants.

  32. Susan on April 11, 2022 at 7:56 pm


  33. Susan on April 11, 2022 at 7:58 pm

    Thank you for your replies, Phil!

  34. James on September 15, 2022 at 11:45 am

    I’m looking for a new nute line of products..was curious if you had any free samples, I would be glad to pay any shipping cost. Thanks for your time and hope to hear from you soon.

    • Phil on September 19, 2022 at 9:56 am

      So sorry James, I don’t have free samples.

  35. Mark on October 15, 2022 at 2:54 pm

    I’m familiar that it offers no benefits to cole crops but would it be of any benefit to garlic? Thanks.

    • Phil on October 15, 2022 at 4:44 pm

      Absolutely. I just used it when planting mine this week.

      • Mark on October 15, 2022 at 6:17 pm

        Thanks. I have 12 varieties and still prepping a bed, they’ll be close and didn’t want to use it if it were a waste, I’ve been using Mykos for the last few years with good results but it’s also susceptible to phosphorus and didn’t know what to put in the hole, it’s been years since I grew garlic intentionally–I thought a farmer told me back then to add bonemeal but it’s anywhere from 10 to 25 of P depending on brand and I thought I read over 8 or 10 of P can kill the mykos (pretty good at spelling except that word so will use the brand name spelling), I bought some 3-9-2 Dr. Earth for flowering plants, and have some others with very little or no P, like 5-1-1 and 12-0-12–everything I’m reading lately says garlic wants Nitrogen–so I’m still procrastinating! My intention was to fill the holes with worm casting sample bags I have sitting around here, a spoon of Mykos and some Azomite… plus a little of one of the 3 fertilizers…

        • Phil on October 17, 2022 at 9:02 am

          I would just stick with the worm castings, mykos, and azomite. That’s neough. I wouldn’t apply much N-P-K unless you have a soil test saying you need any of them, and in that case, I would fertilize the whole soil area rather than just the planting holes. Can’t get into more detail here but hopefully that helps.

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