Understanding who helps plants respond to environmental stress and how
Stress is not good for anyone, plants included, and much as the human microbiome is important in health and disease, so is the plant microbiome. When subjected to environmental stress, plants recruit help from certain members of their microbiome family to recover. Given the increasing incidence of severe weather events and overall climate change, understanding how plant microbiota help their host to survive environmental threats will be important to ensuring crop performance in the future and could also aid in enhancing it now. The EU-funded MetaFun project is investigating microbiota activities as well as microbe–microbe interactions in the root that are activated under various conditions. Insight will be important for the present and future of agricultural crop performance.