The garden is providing a wide variety of food for the kitchen. Beetroot is flourishing along with cabbages, kale, lettuces and tomatoes. Parsnip and carrots, earlier pruned by the wallabies, who learnt how to jump the fence, have bounced back.
The active ingredients found in common household weed killers such as Roundup and Yates can cause bacteria to develop a resistance to antibiotics, scientists have warned.
In a new study published in the scientific journal Microbiology, researchers from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand found that three of the most commonly used herbicides – glyphosate (active ingredient in Roundup), dicamba (found in Yates), and 2,4-D – caused E.coli and salmonella to become less susceptible to antibiotics.
Jack Heinemann, a professor in molecular biology and genetics, and one of the authors of the study, said the findings show that “bacteria respond to exposure to the herbicides by changing how susceptible they are to antibiotics used in human and animal medicine”.
Antibiotic resistance is a phenomenon where bacteria become unresponsive to treatments that were once highly effective in killing them – making common infections and diseases harder to treat and, occasionally, lethal.
The research, which builds on a 2015 study conducted by the same group that first established the link between weed killers and antibiotic resistance (also known as antimicrobial resistance), found that both the active and inert ingredients in the chemicals can cause bacteria to adapt to the harsher environment and hence become more resistant against antibiotics.