Endophytes are organisms that live within the plant tissue without usually causing any symptoms. In plants of natural ecosystems, endophytic fungi are in fact ubiquitous. This review summarizes research carried out on their biology emphasizing their functionality in terms of the host range, the colonization extent, the way of transmission between hosts and their influence on host fitness. The main focus will be on two classes of fungal endophytes, class 2 and 4 (Dark Septate Fungi), due to their potential for practical application in forestry. Raising awareness of the potential of endophytes to enhance the host’s resistance to pathogens, insects and anthropogenic disturbances is a key factor in developing applications for forest management.
This review highlights the importance to people of some types of wild fungi considered in the context of nonwood forest products. Macrofungi are used both for food and medicine proposes. Substances isolated from the higher Basidiomycetes and Ascomycetes mushrooms express promising immune modulating, antitumor, antiviral, antibacterial and antidiabetic properties. They have been, and are presently, used against cancer in some countries in Far East as well as in the United States of America and Canada. Their useful properties are mainly conferred by biologically-active polysaccharides present in the fruiting bodies and cultured mycelium. A few dozen different polysaccharide antitumor agents have been developed from such species as: Ganoderma lucidum, Lentinus edodes, Schizophylum commune, Trametes versicolor and Inonotus obliquus. In the review some other fungi and their properties are also described. The information is provided to widen our knowledge of the importance of the organisms that live in forest ecosystems.
Cultivation of the Burgundy truffle, Tuber aestivum Vittad., has become a new agricultural alternative in Poland. For rural economies, the concept of landscaping is often considerably more beneficial than conventional agriculture and promotes reforestation, as well as land-use stability. Considering examples from France, Italy, Hungary and Spain, truffle cultivation stimulates economic and social development of small, rural communities. Because there is no long tradition of truffle orchards in Poland, knowledge regarding the environmental factors regulating the formation of fruiting bodies of T. aestivum is limited. Thus, knowledge concerning ectomycorrhizal communities of T. aestivum host species is crucial to ensuring successful Burgundy truffle production. We investigated the persistence of T. aestivum ectomycorrhizae on roots of hazel (Corylus avellana L.) and oak (Quercus robur L.) and checked the host-species influence on community structure of ectomycorrhizal fungi. The study was conducted in an experimental plantation located in eastern Poland and established in 2008. We demonstrated that the number of fungal taxa was not significantly different between oak and hazel. However, the species composition differed between these two host trees. During the three-year study, we observed that species richness did not increase with the age of the plantation.
This paper describes the quantitative and qualitative composition of bacteria isolated from soil in the selected sites in the Nida Basin, in places where mycorrhizae and ascocarps of summer truffle (Tuber aestivum) were found, and in a control soil (without truffle). A classic growth culture method was used with Sanger DNA sequencing to obtain quantitative and qualitative measures of bacterial cultures. The obtained results showed differences in bacteriome composition between the case samples, in which summer truffle fructification was observed, and the control samples. Seven classes of bacteria were identified: Actinobacteria, Bacilli, Deinococci, Flavobacteria, Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, and Gammaproteobacteria. The most numerous bacterial genera were Pseudomonas (class Gammaproteobacteria) – 33%, Streptomyces (class Actinobacteria) – 29% and Bacillus (class Bacilli) – 15%. This research broadens the understanding of individual groups of bacteria accompanying truffles and their potential impact on the formation of summer truffle ascocarps.
Changes in chemical compounds and in ectomycorrhizal structure were determined for Scots pine growing on post agricultural soil lying fallow for 3, 6 and 15 years, after amendment with pine sawdust. Soil without any amendments was used as the control treatment. Comparing the ectomycorrhizal structure 15 years after the application of pine sawdust revealed no significant differences in abundance or species richness between soil with and without organic enrichment. The results showed that the ectomycorrhizal status depends on soil conditions (soil pH, nitrogen content), which remain unaffected by saw dust application. In all treatments, the most frequently occurring ectomycorrhizae genera were Dermocybe, Hebeloma, Suillus, Tomentella and Tricholoma. Two species (Paxillus involutus, Amanita muscaria) were specific to the control plots that lay fallow for 15 years.
This article highlights historical data regarding truffles’ occurrence in Poland. Along with the soil parameters the plant communities at the sites were studied. The results of the chemical soil analyses showed that the soil pH in water on 5 sites was acidic (from 4.3 to 6.1), and only in one, Wiązowna, was the pH (7.2) conductive to truffles development. Similarly, the content of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) in soil samples was low (from 0 to 0.03%), except for Wiązowna, where CaCO3 was 0.12%. Among the 24 reported species of trees and shrubs, 7 species were host-plants of summer truffle (Tuber aestivum Vitt.). Out of the 7 species, oak and hornbeam were present at four localisations. Across the sites, 31 species of ground-layer plants were identified. Among these, Epipactis helleborine was only one host-species of summer truffle. Our findings indicate that formation of truffles fruiting-bodies depends on specific habitat characteristics. The key factors determining this process are soil parameters, such as: texture, pH and calcium content. Our inventory showed that the sites we studied still persist as natural stands, although only one of them seems to be favorable for truffles development: this site is located in Wiązowna, where soil is of pH 7.2 and E. helleborine, (host species for truffles from Orchidaceae) is found, fulfills the environmental requirements of truffles