Title: Ectomycorrhizal fungi of Florida
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Title: Ectomycorrhizal fungi of Florida
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Bibliographic ID: UF00020006
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Central Science
Library

APR 15 1987

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tomycorrhizal Fungi of Florida II

The Genus Laccaria

Richard E. Baird
James W. Kimbrough*


Florida Cooperative Extension Service / Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences / University of Florida /John T. Woeste, Dean


A number of species of mushrooms and puffballs
have been shown to form a beneficial or ectomycor-
rhizal relationship with forest tree species. These
fungi are unique in that they mediate increased
uptake of water and soil nutrients to the trees,
increasing survival and growth. In fact, some tree
species will die without the presence of ectomycor-
rhizal fungi.

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Figure 1. Laccarla ozcoior.
Important ectomycorrhizal fungi, for example,
are species of Cortinarius, Hebeloma, Inocybe,
Laccaria, Russula, Boletus, and Suillus. Specifical-
ly, species of the genus Laccaria comprise a large
portion of the mushroom flora extending from the
tropics to the arctic tundra. In portions of
northern and central Florida, which is temperate to
subtropical, several species of Laccaria (Fig. 1) are
known to occur in mixed woods or under coniferous
trees. No information is yet available on specific
associations.
The different species have been reported to be
pioneer fungi which can become established on


disturbed or barren areas, thereby allowing tree
species to more easily survive and grow on these
sites. Mushroom species of the genus Laccaria have
been reported to form ectomycorrhizae with
numerous tree species, including ones of economic
importance such as Pinus echinata and Pinus taeda
in the eastern United States. Even though many
studies have been conducted with Laccaria in other
parts of the country, knowledge is fragmentary for
the Florida Laccaria species. Because very little is
known about these fungi and their potential in
reforestation work (usually on poor quality lands),
studies are currently being conducted at the
University of Florida.
The Laccaria species found in Florida are
collected and brought to the laboratory. The
mushrooms are cleaned of debris and cut open with
a sterilized razor blade. Tissue from the inner
portion of the mushroom is removed and placed on
petri plates containing modified Melin-Norkrans
medium (Table 1) as used by Don Marx at the
University of Georgia.
After the fungi are isolated, a specific fungus
culture is tested by three different methods:
(1) sterile seedlings of loblolly pine, sand
pine, and slash pine are grown with the
Laccaria species in large 38 x 300 mm test
tubes (Fig. 2) containing peatmoss/vermi-
culite (1/9) with growth solution;
Table 1. Modified Melin-Norkrans Medium
Agar 14.0 g CaCI, 0.05 g
Malt Extract 3.0 g FeCI, 1.2 ml (1% Solution)
d-Glucose 10.0 g NaCI 0.025 g
(NH4)C,4H4,O 0.25g Thiamine 100 g
KH,PO, 0.5 g Distilled 1,000 ml
MgS04*7HO 0.15 g HO


*Richard E. Baird is a former Visiting Research Assistant and James W. Kimbrough is Professor of Mycology, Botany Depart-
ment, IFAS, University of Florida, Gainesville.


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ure. Figure 3. "Conetainers."


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Figure 7.


Figure 5.


(2) the fungi and seedlings are grown as in
method 1., but they are placed in "cone-
tainers" (Fig. 3) rather than in the test
tubes; and
(3) the seedlings are placed in growth pouches
(Fig. 4) with a nutrient solution in the
bottom for growth and the fungus is
placed in the pouch.
After approximately three months, the fungi are
observed for ectomycorrhizal formation. The roots
of the seedlings (Fig. 5) are observed for the
presence of the fungus around the surface of the
root tips and to see if it has penetrated the root
between the cortical cells (Fig. 6).
During the past year, Laccaria: vinaceo-brunnea
and Laccaria bicolor, both collected in Florida and


V


cultured from mushroom tissue, were used in the
ectomycorrhizal synthesis studies as in the methods
1 through 3. These species were found to form
ectomycorrhizae with loblolly pine, slash pine and
sand pine. In methods 1 and 2, the roots had a
higher percentage of mycorrhizal formation than in
3. A typical Laccaria root association is shown in
Figure 7.
Because of the obvious successful synthesis work
with the Florida cultures of Laccaria laccata and
Laccaria trullisata, fungal tissue is being grown to
be applied to pine seedlings for outplanting studies
in Florida. From this information, we can more
accurately determine the usefulness of the two
species in reclamation and reforestation work in
Florida.


This publication was promulgated at a cost of $509.12, or 34 cents per copy, to provide information on the potential of
ectomycorrhizal fungi in improving the growth of economically important forest trees to Florida foresters, county Extension
agents and other interested individuals. 2-1.5M-87


COOPERATIVE EXTENSION SERVICE, UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA, INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES, K.R. Tefertiller,
director, in cooperation with the United States Department of Agriculture, publishes this information to further the purpose of the May 8 and
June 30, 1914 Acts of Congress; and is authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institu-
tions that function without regard to race, color, sex or national origin. Single copies of Extension publications (excluding 4-H and Youth publica-
tions) are available free to Florida residents from County Extension Offices. Information on bulk rates or copies for out-of-state purchasers is "
available from C.M. Hinton, Publications Distribution Center, IFAS Building 664, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611. Before publicizing this publication,
editors should contact this address to determine availability.




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