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Gliocladium virens cultured at home?

 
pollinator
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Location: Denver, CO
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Gliocladium virens is the active ingredient of SoilGard biofungicide. It outcompetes Pythium, Rhizoctonia and Fusarium species. I'm currently having trouble with wire stem on brassicas caused by Rhizoctonia. The problem with the SoilGard product is the expense. If it could be sustained at home, the expense would be much less. I was thinking that once the product was bought, it could be treated much like a sourdough starter. If sterile medium was inoculated with it and brassica seedlings planted, the fungus would probably proliferate. Half the medium could then be used to inoculate a larger volume of potting mix for seedling starting, and half mixed with new sterile medium to start the cycle over again. Over winter it could be stored in the freezer.

Any thoughts?
 
gardener
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You will need petri dishes, agar agar food for the growing medium, an incubator (fridge or a true cabinet temp should be 72 - 78 f. Moisture is 85 percent.  Check twice a day for colony density.

Redhawk
 
pollinator
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Redhawk,  I was thinking along the same lines, but began to wonder about storage and loss of biocontrol attributes from successive subculture of the Gliocladium.  Then I remembered that, from the fungal pathogen side of the equation, there is a practice when wanting to scale up a fungal inoculum whereby large "food service" sized, stainless steel pans are filled with wetted barley or millet and autoclaved.  Once cooled, the foil over the top of the pan keeping it sterile is folded back only at one edge and the fungal inoculum is placed inside.  The pans are stored at a temperature suitable for fungal growth.....in Gilbert's case, the Gliocladium.  Plenty of nutrients in the grain to support growth of the fungus and it will be the main organism in the pan, even if a few contaminants enter the system.  After a few weeks of growth, the infested grain is dispersed on a flat surface (no need to be sterile at this point) and allowed to dry....which allows the fungus to form durable spores.  In this forum, the inoculum could be stored in a cool place for several weeks before use.  I admit that I would probably only do it this way if I was always inoculating the grain with something in whose identity I was confident.....thus, maybe going back to the original bag to start the new culture...??   Alternatively, if you get good at identifying your desired biocontrol fungus under a microscope or by other means, you might combine some of these methods.  Anyway, just a thought to add to the discussion..... Open access document here may be of assistance:

https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/6415/9877805bdbdae317bd922d7b78e3cb688e24.pdf
 
Bryant RedHawk
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hau kola john, very good info.

Redhawk
 
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