Tell me about your microbes!

I can be very long-winded on the subject of microbes. I know this. It’s a personal problem and I assure you I am working on it.

Microbes have become a very hot topic in organic cannabis cultivation. There are probably just as many questions out there as there are answers about microbes.

Recently, I completed the SECOES Microbial Bloom Study. What I discovered is I love microbes! I use microbes/enzymes for soooo many uses around the cultivation facility. They are my microscopic maids!

GNET @growopowners, @GrowOpEmployees, @mastergrowers, @Caregivers: What has been your experience with microbes/enzymes? Good? Bad? Indifferent? Do you have a brand by which you swear? Are you a microbe manufacturer, @ServiceProviders, @EquipManufacturers, @EquipSuppliers? Why do your microbes eat and poop on other microbes?

Are you microbe-curious? I know I am :wink:


Don’t forget our @LabOwner s and @LabEmployees!

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We don’t have much in terms of microbes, but we do maintain a substantial supply of yersinia pestis, Its the perfect gift for an IRS Agent at Xmas time.



Your wit is quick! You never fail to make me laugh with your jabs at Uncle Sam and his goon squad! I love it!


Funny, I thought you wanted to avoid the IRS like yersinia pestis. :wink:


I’ve worked with microbes for +35 years and have used them for everything from oil spill cleanup (see ) to stopping root-rot… to cleaning up U-235.

Microbes are miraculous critter’s…and they are symbiotic with most other genera/species… So…it’s prudent to know what you want them to accomplish. For example, if you want them to eat fats/sugars, you use a Lipolytica (means, fat-eater in Latin), or you use tardigrades, rotifers, etc., to accomplish some other biological objective.

I have worked with Osprey Biotechnics in Sarasota, FL for +30 years and I use their formulations, exclusively, in all of my biological products (as the Founder Dr. Larrick Glendenning, was my Mentor during my Master’s Program at VTCOL). I highly recommend them.

What has been your experience with microbes/enzymes? Good? Bad? Indifferent? Do you have a brand by which you swear? Are you a microbe manufacturer, @ServiceProviders, @EquipManufacturers, @EquipSuppliers? Why do your microbes eat and poop on other microbes?

Why do your microbes eat and poop on other microbes? Answer… They don’t ‘poop’, their function is ‘mineralization’, which is the breakdown of all compounds to either carbon, water or gas…

Hope this helps.

Dr. Resnick


If you had to pick one for house guests what would you choose A or B?


I could run away from the rat. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Thanks Dr. Resnick! That DOES help immensely! Microbes, please forgive my slight!

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So I love microbes and have been using them since 2008-2009. Really depends on the application but I love the product from Terraganix called EM-1, you can buy a liter and rebrew an enormous amount of their product into bokashi and a liquid soil conditioner. It has lots of good microbes and enzymes. Love it! Then I have played with the powders and they work well also but they don’t have other application like the EM 1 does. They have their benefits of multiple or specific single microbes that are very beneficial.

So microbes need a carbon source and nitrogen to work properly and you can fuck your garden/soil up to the point of toxicity if you are not balanced in those aspects. So plenty of carbon and balance of nitrogen for happy microbes.

Now with indoor hydro I had to learn that microbes don’t work so well. Coco and peat media’s are probably okay because they have a carbons source to break down but rockwool is a no go. I have been told they convert nitrates into nitrites creating a toxic root zone. The benefit of microbes breaking down organic matter is to create humic and folvic acid and amino acids. So I bypassed the microbes and feed direct with those organic acids and a little bit of yucca to bind it all to the salt fertilizers. That’s the peak of my experience with microbes any thoughts and inputs are much appreciated.




Nice! Thanks @AltMedReed! We still need to get together and put one in the air :smiley:

Anybody else have experience with microbes and bokashi?


Yes I definitely am curious about microbes!


Lots of fun microbial talk, and for more basic biological info I recommend Jeff Lowenfel’s book @TeemingwithMicrobes. We might also talk about Fungi too (btw Jeff also has @TeemingwithFungi and @TeemingwithNutrients books), and the symbiotic relationships between microbes, fungi, nutrients, water, air and soil that make up the natural @rhizosphere that exists beneath the surface! Booyah!

At Key to Life, as an @EquipSupplier we’re all about carbon-based concentrated powders to deliver all these amazing beneficial bacteria in a more sustainable form - meaning not in water, (because why pay to ship water?). One of the magical things about microbes is that when given the right stimuli (air, water, food) they love to reproduce. Powdered forms of these microorganisms, combined with @molasses, @kelp, @sulphur, @fulvic and @humic acids, etc can be brewed into ‘microbial teas’ that generate population explosions and can be distributed through automated irrigation or @fertigation systems such as @Dosatron. Watering with these teas will make your moms very happy - and you will see the difference!

At KTL, we wanted to provide diverse species of microbes including varieties of Bacilli, Pseudomonas, Streptomyces, and Trichoderma (this is actually a fungus). Benefits of these species include speeding up rooting times, increasing root nodulation and vigor, as well as keeping root zones healthy and clean. They assist with nutrient chelation, cleaning root radicals, and also cleaning leaf stomata when applied in a foliar fashion. They also have a flushing effect, helping to solublize and eat salts and prevent nutrient lockout. In short: beneficial microbes and fungi help plants to be healthy and strong, maximize canopy during veg, maximize macro and micro nutrient uptake during flower and oil production, maximize terpene development, and help plants fight off mold, mildew and pests.

Since I’m on a roll, I’ll just mention these points:

  1. When evaluating microbial amendments, be sure to check species diversity and cfus (colony-forming units) per gram. KTL microbes contain 1.2 billion cfus per gram.
  2. Biochar is a great way to promote microbial and fungal life, as well as nutrient and water retention in your soil.
  3. Mycorrhizal fungi are really cool! They actually provide the capability for communication and even nutrient exchange between plants! How cool is that?
  4. @powdertothepeople!

Good point! Great read! Booyah!

Thanks so much for that awesome microbial roundup, @mike4! How many microbial products do you currently offer?

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I’m a true believer in Microbes and it’s great to hear from the experts. I like brewing up a batch of fresh tea but knowing the specific fomulations would be a gift and a true craft brew not just home brew :grin: I do have a good friend who is a soil microbe analyser but I feel it’s critical to brew for the workload ahead. Thanks everyone who helps us grow better and healthier crops.

I’m now incorporating Bacashi and brewed teas to enhance Terpenes and flavours. It’s easy to go crazy so I learnt Less is More! Any guidance or recipes would be amazing. Thanks for asking and sharing. Any Canadian input would appreciate. Bert in Ottawa


SECOES Microbial Solutions provides a balanced blend of microbes, enzymes, algae, bacteria, and archaea. This patented technology has proven to increase terpenes and cannabinoids, increasing the value of your cannabis crops. Our microbes promote robust growth and increase plant health far beyond your traditional single microbe that simply unlocks phosphorous. We provide a symphony of microbes!

Check out the SECOES Performance testing category

Check out the SECOES Category

Check out the @Growernick SECOES Microbial Bloom Study for a study conducted by an industry leader.

If you have questions or are interested in testing out our microbes, call Donnie at 602-334-5312.


Wild-Crafted on Big Island HI
Cannabis Specific
Phosphorus, Potassium, Micronutrient solubizing Microbes


Hi Bart, what soil media are you growing in?


Thanks Nick!

Key to Life has 1 all-in-one microbial product called Root Life Microbes. Links to our product Data Sheet and Certificate of Analysis for our microbes from the Organic Materials Review Institute are attached to this reply.

Other KTL amendments include:

  • Root Life Fungi
  • Key to Uptake (fulvic acid)
  • Key to Boost (humic acid)
  • Revitalize (amino acid)
  • Silver Bullet (micronized Sulphur)
  • Molasses Magic
  • Key to Kelp
  • Key to Silica
  • Foliar feeding

KTL Microbes data sheet

KTL Microbes COA


I second “Teaming with Microbes.”