Biofilms in Agronomy

Biofilms in Agronomy

Biomatter is a defining component to crop production.

These first two images were initially assumed to be the result of children playing in the water with soap, and the soap drying on the surface of the turf. In actuality, the turf had been put on the WaterSOLV™ Injectable water treatment program, and the reaction of the chemistry lifted the biofilms that had been formed over time on top of the soil, beneath the turf. Technically, this film is called polysaccharide, another term, bio-film.

Medically, polysaccharide is exhibited like this;

The following image are rose pegs. A certain section of the roses were not growing. After taking water and soil analyses, it was determined there was a problem with the amount of bacteria in the water and the nutrients for the bacteria in the water and soil, even though both showed no visual evidence – the water was crystal clear, the soils had no odor or visual dark hue color. A little WaterSOLV™ BC dripped into the irrigation ditch, in the back of a cube van from a tote (wish I had that picture). Six weeks later, six inches of growth. The grower stated there were several areas in that block that never produced crop until we’d made that treatment. The total bacteria of the water were 10 to the 7th. The sulfate levels of the water alone were around 600 ppm.

Everything about agronomy was correct at the site; hydration, nutrition, pH, CEC, SAR. What was missing was biology and oxygen, something we tend to overlook in our analytical methods.

There are beneficial bacteria, detrimental bacteria, and their exudates can be toxic, i.e. bio-films and hydrogen sulfide gas. Here were two examples we’d never had seen or fixed, analytically, and even with today's analytical methods, without incorporating the Total Bac T analyses and their nutrients (Fe, S, SO4-S and Mn).


Sulfate Reducing Bacteria / black layer

Iron Bacteria


While the reproduction rate of organisms is elevated by warmer temperatures, to their destruction by excessive heat and steam, organisms reproduce exponentially and temperature dependent it can be as quick as over 10 to 15 minutes. That being the case, a single organism can be 144 organisms in 1 day.

Where water has organisms at 10 to the 3rd, 10,000, in a single day they can equate to 2,985,984 colony forming units. 10 to the 7th calculates to 1,440,000,000. Several things impact this including food source (sulfur, sulfate, iron, manganese), temperature, oxygen content, CEC, SAR, hydration, infiltration. But, if we deal with the bacteria up front, we need not worry about the development of colonies. Sulfate reducing bacteria produce hydrogen sulfide gas (H2S, rotten egg odor), which is toxic to vegetation, as well as lethal to humans at odor detectable levels.

This is just the surface of the problem. The real problem is polysaccharides, an excretion by bacteria, a slime, that is impervious to just about everything including acids, nutrients, fungicides, algaecides and even various liquid and powder chlorines, but not to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). And yet H2O2 will damage vegetation with H2S and sulfurous acid, as will many oxidants.

This is why we developed WaterSOLV BC, a peroxide that will not damage vegetation, that will penetrate and mitigate polysaccharide, while degrading to pure water and much desired dissolved oxygen, while also adding the amino acids, acetates, glycolates and mitigate chloride salts, similar traits to its predecessor WaterSOLV Concentrate and WaterSOLV Curative.