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Mycorrhizal inoculated soil made spinach sweeter in taste tests.

Posts: 928
Location: Melbourne FL, USA - Pine and Palmetto Flatland, Sandy and Acidic
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I found an interesting study written by master gardener Janet Didur where one of many interesting observations noted.


It was a small scale study but seems well constructed. Not all plants responded much different, some possibly adversely but the study was small in scale so other factors could potentially be involved. Specifically, the spinach grown was reported in taste testing as sweeter when grown in inoculated test beds.

.... It consisted of asking volunteers to comment on what they noticed, if anything, between samples from Beds A and B. They were not told from which bed their samples came. Four of the five subjects thought that the samples of spinach, both strawberry and orach, were 'sweeter' from the beds receiving inoculum. No difference was noted for the other plants.

it's an interesting read, other conclusions were drawn.
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That would seem to make sense, as they can draw from a wider variety of resources.
John S
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Location: Northern New Mexico
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Thanks for sharing that interesting study. I thought the overall results were pretty impressive, though I had some question on methodology. The author grew six species and reported growth results in height. Harvestable weight would seem a more telling criterion, especially for chard since leaves can be harvested weekly for months. She gave charts for early growth, where there were only slight differences in height, but had pictures of great differences in height for two varieties that would continue to grow through the season--double the height for innoculated cardoon and japanese chrysanthemums. Also very interested that uninnoculated chard suffered severe damage from leaf miners with innoculated chard left alone.
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