Plants grow in association and interaction with complex communities of organisms, environmental conditions, and management practices. The term “Phytobiomes” encompasses all of this complexity.
A phytobiome includes the plant itself, all micro- and macroorganisms living in, on, or around the plant – such as microbes, animals, insects and other plants – and the environment, including soil, air, water, weather, and climate. All these interactions are influenced by management practices.
Phytobiomes have an important role in ensuring the sustained health and productivity of plants and plant ecosystems.
Because interactions within phytobiomes are dynamic and complex, there is a need to build a foundation of systems-level knowledge of various phytobiomes.
This includes an understanding of how the different components interact with and influence each other which can then be used to empower the development of predictive and prescriptive analytics for next generation precision and digital agricultural systems.