Episode 4

Ep. 4. Impact of Soil Fungi on Milkweed Plants

The soil harbors all kinds of fungi; some beneficial and some detrimental to the health of plants. A specific class of fungi, known as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) form a symbiotic relationship with the roots of plants that's associated with over 80% of plant species globally. These fungi can help alter plant defense traits against herbivores or help provide nutrients to plants. In episode, we digest a study specific to AMF of milkweed plants and how it can impact performance of monarch butterfly caterpillars and aphids.

Full citation to study:

Meier, A. R., & Hunter, M. D. (2018). Mycorrhizae alter toxin sequestration and performance of two specialist herbivores. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 6: 1 - 16.

About the Podcast

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Jolly Green Scientists
Digesting scientific research relevant to the green industry

About your hosts

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Erfan Vafaie

I'm an entomologist with the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, based out of Overton, Texas (U.S.A.). I conduct research and educational programming on integrative pest management of ornamental and nursery crops, working mainly with producers and other green industry professionals. My online 'pseudonym' is the SixLeggedAggie.
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Vikram Baliga

I'm the manager of the University Teaching and Research Greenhouse and Horticultural Gardens at Texas Tech University. I also serve as an instructor of horticulture in the Department of Plant and Soil Science and I'm a long-time and active science communicator. I'm also a thunderous plant nerd.