Originally posted at Writeindependent.org on September 5, 2011
Movies like the Matrix, Terminator 2, Alien are missing something. There is no green life, no plants in these movies. Sure, they’re ultra sleek and compelling, but they forgot one important fact: without plants, none of these people would be alive.
It gets even weirder. Because plants don’t really digest the nutrients they need, they rely heavily on bacteria and fungi in the soil to do the job of digestion for them. In fact, we rely heavily on bacteria in our own gut to digest and make bio-available the nutrients we need from our food.
In short, we would be dead if it weren’t for bacteria.
Science fiction movies are skimpy on the science. In fact, they shouldn’t even be called science fiction. They should be called fiction-fiction movies.
I bring this up because I want people to know that plants keep us alive. There is no future world without them, and certainly life would be pretty bleak without greenery. Gardeners know that we’re linked to plants and the soil, so they don’t have any trouble understanding this concept.
The unsung hero of the underground world isn’t a bacteria, though. It’s a fungus called mycorrhizae. For some excellent information on mycorrhizae, click here and scroll down half way. The reason this fungus is so important is that it extends the root system of healthy plants and therefore the surface area for picking up nutrients by 100 fold.
Why should you care about fungi? Two reasons: 1. If you eat food that is grown on healthy soil, it will be packed with nutrients and 2. If plants are sprayed with pesticides and herbicide, the microorganisms in the soil suffer, thereby affecting a plant’s ability to take up nutrients.
Why buy organic? It’s not because it tastes better, people! It’s because you’re eating food that is healthier, more packed with vitamins and minerals.
If you want the studies that support these claims, contact firstname.lastname@example.org