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Bacteria attending the warm water retting of flax


, : Bacteria attending the warm water retting of flax. Centralbl Bakt Ii Abt 69(8/14): 164-178

Flax straw was placed in glass cylinders, covered with warm water, and held in an incubator at 30[degree]C. For direct microscopic examination smears were stained with carbol fuchsin and by Gram's method. Flax decoction and malt agar were used for cultural examination. The pure cultures isolated were studied morphologically and physiologically. Their action upon pectose, lactose, glucose, mannitol, coagulated blood serum and milk, and production of indol, H2S and ammonia were observed. At first Gram-negative spheres and short rods, yeasts, a few Gram-positive spheres and Gram-negative streptobacilli are found. After 24 hrs. many spore-containing rods of the B. amylobacter type were to be seen, and also Granulobacter pectinovorum. Colon-like organisms, small rods in chains, many very short, plump Gram-negative rods, Gram-negative cocci and yeasts were also present. After formation of the membrane the Granulobacter pectinovorum type almost disappeared, but the coccus-like rods and colon type remained in about equal proportions. Cultural studies of the infusions showed the presence of the colon group. Most common were Bact. paracoli III, B. lactis aero-genes, Bacterium cloaceae, and Bacterium luteolum. The pigment-producing bacteria identified were Bact. pseu-doviolaceum, B. fuscascens and B. auriantiacus. B. proteus, B. sublilis, B. mesentericus, B. mycoides and Streptobacillus lini were also isolated. Bacteria of the colon group and the aerobic B. comesci are present during the entire retting process. Bacteria of the B. subtilis group were observed to play an important role during the 1st part of the process. The greatest numbers of micrococci are present especially during the end phase. Vibrios do not occur until the end.

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