27th March 2017
Cue freak-out by the eco-Nazis.
Thousands of types of bacteria may live on plants; only dozens or maybe hundreds live inside. But the very fact that bacteria live inside plants is surprising. “It catches almost everybody off guard,” says Indigo CEO David Perry. And these bacteria that plants allow inside their roots, leaves, and stems can be beneficial, allowing them to, for example, capture nutrients from the air. Plants even pass along their endophytes via seeds, packaging their beneficial bacteria up into a convenient packet for their offspring. Because fewer bacteria live inside the plant than outside, endophytes also face less competition, meaning they’re more likely to be effective as a product for farmers.