How Does Unleash Root Inoculant Increase Plant Nutrient Uptake?
1. What is Unleash?
Unleash is a plant root inoculant that increases nutrient plant uptake and contains a proprietary blend of beneficial plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR, with rhizo = root zone).
2. How do I apply Unleash to my plants?
Unleash can be used in almost every system available. Unleash can be directly injected into drip irrigation systems, sprinklers, sprayers or any other system you may use. Unleash can also be applied using a tank or reservoir system.
3. Will Unleash work if applied as a foliar spray?
Unleash can be applied as a foliar spray to help with branch and leaf disease management. To maximize nutrient availability for your plants, we recommend applying Unleash as close to the plant roots as possible by using drip irrigation and/or applying to the base of the plant.
4. When do I incorporate Unleash into my growing schedule?
For best results, we recommend applying Unleash either when you begin fertilization or as early as possible during your plant’s growth cycle, as it will maximize your plant nutrient uptake and help young plants maximize their growth potential. However, Unleash will benefit plants when applied later in the growing cycle (see next question). Note that for perennial plants, we also recommend application post-harvest.
5. It is part of the way through the growing season. Will Unleash still help my plants?
Yes. As long as your plants are still taking up nutrients Unleash will provide benefits by making these nutrients available from soil and fertilizer. If the growing season has already started, we recommend you apply Unleash as soon as possible to further increase plant nutrient uptake .
6. What types of crops/plants can Unleash be used with?
Unleash has been used successfully with a wide variety of plant types including (1) herbaceous – such as lettuce, strawberries, broccoli, tomatoes, peppers and many others; (2) trees – such as avocado, fruit and nut trees; (3) vines – such as melons, grapevines and sweet potatoes; (4) shrubs – such as roses.
For annual plants, we recommend applying Unleash when planting occurs or when fertilization begins. For perennial plants we recommend applying Unleash when fertilization begins after the plant comes out of dormancy and also applying Unleash post-harvest if more fertilizer is added at that time.
7. How long does it take to activate Unleash®?
Activation is the process where the microbes in Unleash are “woken up” from their dormant state by diluting the concentrated Unleash product in non-chlorinated water. For optimal results, allow mixture to rest for 30 minutes up to 4 hours before applying. If needed mixture can be applied up to 3 days after mixing.
8. What type of container should I use to activate Unleash?
Activation should be in a clean non-metal container – a plastic bucket or tub is ideal. Unleash microbes will “stick” to a metal container upon activation such that most of them will be lost before application.
9. Why are there solid clumps floating in concentrated or activated Unleash?
Unleash contains a mixture of beneficial microbes. Sometimes these microbes can form clumps that will float in water. These clumps are a normal part of the product and will not disrupt Unleash activity.
10. Why can’t I use chlorinated water to activate Unleash? How can I tell if my water has chlorine in it?
Chlorinated water will kill Unleash’s microbes. If you are on a municipal water system or you treat your well water, then your water is chlorinated. To dechlorinate your water, we suggest adding 1 teaspoon unsulfured molasses to every 5 gallons of water, and leaving it overnight. Unleash can then be safely activated without microbe loss.
11. Can I use chlorinated water to water my plants?
Yes, chlorinated water can be used to water your plants after Unleash has been applied.
12. At what temperature range can I activate Unleash?
Unleash can be activated at temperatures between 50 – 90˚ F. It should be kept out of direct sunlight to avoid raising the water temperature above 90˚F.
13. At what temperature range does Unleash® work?
Unleash works at any surface temperature that crops will grow. This is because subsurface soil temperatures (where plant roots are located and where Unleash microbes are active) have a much more moderate temperature range than the soil surface.
14. At what temperature range can I store Unleash?
Unleash should be stored at room temperature out of direct sunlight between 40˚ – 90˚F.
15. What is the best way to incorporate Unleash into my crop watering routine?
For best results Unleash’s microbes need to (1) reach the plant’s roots; and (2) colonize the plant roots so they will “digest” nutrients from soil or fertilizer, making them available for uptake.
To ensure that Unleash’s microbes reach the plant roots and don’t stick to the surface soil we recommend watering your plants for 15-20 minutes before application. Once Unleash has been applied continue to water your plants as normal.
For example, if you normally water for several hours, apply Unleash after watering for 15 minutes, then continue watering as usual. While a subsurface irrigation system is ideal, Unleash can be applied by above-ground drip or as a foliar spray with equally successful results so long as enough water is applied for Unleash microbes to reach the root system.
16. Does Unleash® work with herbicides and pesticides?
Unleash cannot be directly mixed with most herbicides or pesticides during activation. However, Unleash works fine with most herbicides and pesticides if Unleash is applied to plants 2 weeks before or after herbicide/pesticide application.
For advice on how to use Unleash with a specific herbicide or pesticide, contact us at 888-285-7665.
17. Does Unleash help prevent transplant shock?
Yes, Unleash can help prevent transplant shock by applying Unleash to the transplant soil. For best results, apply Unleash to both the transplant soil and to the plant prior to transplantation. The environment the plant roots “see” is in the soil immediately surrounding them, called the Rhizosphere (root zone).
The microbes that inhabit the root zone colonize the plant roots and take nutrients from this environment, making them available to the plant. When a plant is transferred to new soil, this rhizosphere has to re-form, a process which delays growth, causing transplant shock.
By having Unleash microbes in the new soil ready to colonize and make nutrients available, the plant can form a new rhizosphere much more rapidly.
18. Is it safe to use Unleash on plants that are damaged – for example by disease or pests?
Not only is Unleash safe to apply to damaged plants, in many cases Unleash helps to bring plants back to a healthy state. Unleash microbes can also prevent damage from occurring by boosting the immune system and increase stress resistance.
19. How does Unleash work with Mycorrhizae-based agricultural products to optimize plant growth?
Unleash greatly improves the ability of mycorrhizae to colonize plant roots. This is because mycorrhizae need nutrients in order to colonize and extend the plant root system and Unleash microbes ensure sufficient nutrients are available for this to occur.
20. In addition to soil, what other grow media does Unleash work with?
Unleash works equally well with soil, soilless, and hydroponic growing mediums. Unleash’s plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) only require active plant roots to help plants grow. Unleash works with all soil types tested, except very high pH soil (pH>8).
21. Can I use Unleash with compost tea?
For compost tea, we generally recommend activating Unleash separately, then adding to your compost tea mixture just before application.
22. Does Unleash help prevent root burn?
Unleash can help prevent root burn. Root burn generally occurs because common nitrogen fertilizers are sold in a “salt” form to keep them in a neutral pH range when hydrated to prevent root damage from pH extremes.
Unfortunately, this salt form can also damage roots and cause “root burn”. Unleash’s microbes will break down the nitrogen salt into a form the plant can use (usually nitrate or ammonia) by separating the nitrogen from the salt residue, thus preventing root burn.