Rashmi Awasthi, R. Tewari and Harsh Nayyar
Phosphorous (P) is an essential macronutrient required by the plants for their vital functions such as photosynthesis, proteins and nucleic acid production, nitrogen fixation, formation of oil, sugars, starches etc. It is also the part of all biogeochemical cycles in plants. It is least mobile element which is available to plants as phosphate anion. P in precipitated form i.e. Orthophosphate (H2PO4 -1 or HPO4 2-), is absorbed by Fe3+, Ca2+ or Al3+oxides in soil through legend exchange. A large amount of P applied as a fertilizer becomes immobile through precipitation reaction with highly reactive and Fe3+ in the acidic, and + in calcareous or normal soils. The use of phosphate solubilizing bacteria (PSB) as inoculants in soil increases the phosphorous uptake by the plants and also the crop yield. The ability of phosphate solubilizing bacteria to convert insoluble form of phosphorous into soluble one is an important trait in sustainable farming for increasing crops yield. PSB play an important role in enhancing phosphorous availability to plants by lowering soil pH and by microbial production of organic acids and mineralization of organic P by acid phosphatases. These organisms besides providing P also facilitate the growth of plants by improving the uptake of nutrients and stimulating the production of some phytohormones. PSB have high potential as bio-fertilizers especially in P-deficient soils to enhance the growth and yield performance of crops. The present article describes the progress of research on this area and future insights about use of PSB in agriculture.
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