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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Effect of Growth Rate on the Growth of Bacteria in Freshly Moistened Soil1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 51 No. 1, p. 93-96
    Received: Jan 15, 1986

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  1. Peter G. Hartel and
  2. Martin Alexander2



A study was conducted to determine the significance of growth rate on the ability of six bacterial strains to grow in soil immediately following moistening of air-dry soil and to determine if growth in soil solution could be used as a predictor of bacterial growth in soil. The generation times of the six bacterial strains in soil solution extracted from unincubated Eel silt loam that was air-dried and moistened immediately before inoculation, and the extent of growth was directly correlated with the rate of growth of the bacteria, except for one species. The six bacteria did not increase in number in Eel silt loam that had been previously incubated for 14 d after moistening. However, addition of glutamate to this soil increased the numbers of the bacteria that grew most rapidly and had essentially no influence on the two slowest growing strains. Similar results were obtained with strains of Pseudomonas and Bradyrhizobium in two other soils or soil solutions obtained from them. The data indicate that growth in soil solution was a good indicator of the ability of bacteria to grow in nonsterile soil when the soil was inoculated immediately following moistening of air-dry soil and that slow growth, the absence of available C, or both, limit bacterial proliferation.

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