2019 Plant Health Meeting: The Plant Root System Workshop

The Plant Root System: Gateway to Plant-Beneficial Rhizosphere Microbiome Interactions

Saturday, August 3, 2019 08:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Despite recognition of the importance of the plant root system as the gateway to plant-beneficial interactions with the rhizosphere microbiome, the complexity of root classes that constitute a plant’s root system and the importance of deciphering how this complexity shapes microbiome recruitment and plant responses to microbiome services may be overlooked by rhizosphere microbiologists. At the same time, although it is widely recognized that plants actively recruit ecological services provided by the rhizosphere microbiome, the role of the microbiome in mediating changes in root system architecture (RSA) at the cellular to system levels, as well as in whole plant physiology and multitrophic interactions may be overlooked by plant physiologists and breeders. The workshop brought together root and microbiome researchers for in-depth discussion of root system structure and function, including major differences among plants in RSA,genetic, environmental, and microbiome controls on RSA, RSA adaptive responses to plant stress, how these can be manipulated by rhizosphere microorganisms to confer beneficial phenotypes, and what root system traits to measure to quantify these changes. The workshop included interdisciplinary discussion.