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Silva Fennica 1926-1997
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Acta Forestalia Fennica
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Articles containing the keyword 'mycorrhiza'.

Category: Research article

article id 234, category Research article
Enni Flykt, Sari Timonen, Taina Pennanen. (2008). Variation of ectomycorrhizal colonisation in Norway spruce seedlings in Finnish forest nurseries. Silva Fennica vol. 42 no. 4 article id 234. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.234
Ectomycorrhizal (ECM) colonisation patterns and seedling growth of containerised spruce seedlings were studied in five typical Finnish forest nurseries by morphotyping and molecular characterisation. ECM colonisation degree of 1-year-old spruce seedlings was below 20% in all studied Finnish forest nurseries. In 2-year-old spruce seedlings the ECM colonisation degree was ca. 50–60% in three of the nurseries, but negligible in others. The ECM fungal species richness varied from 0.1 to 3.8 types per seedling. Altogether seven ECM morphotypes were distinguished. The clearest factors associated with ECM colonisation patterns were nitrogen and phosphorus fertilisation. Particularly fertilisation in the early stage of seedling development appeared to diminish the degree of colonisation and species richness of ECM fungi. Root/shoot ratio was positively correlated with high colonisation degree and species richness of ECM fungi. Higher fertilisation inputs in these overall fertilisation levels did not increase the size of the seedlings. According to these results moderate fertilisation levels particularly in the beginning of seedling cultivation are critical for generating higher root/shoot ratios and sufficient ECM colonisation degree of the roots.
  • Flykt, University of Helsinki, Department of Applied Chemistry and Microbiology, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Timonen, University of Helsinki, Department of Applied Chemistry and Microbiology, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Pennanen, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Vantaa Research Unit, P.O. Box 18, FI-01301 Vantaa, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 533, category Research article
Anna Liisa Ruotsalainen, Juha Tuomi, Henry Väre. (2002). A model for optimal mycorrhizal colonization along altitudinal gradients. Silva Fennica vol. 36 no. 3 article id 533. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.533
Mycorrhizal associations are generally favourable for vascular plants in nutrient-poor conditions. Still, non-mycorrhizal plants are common in high arctic and alpine areas, which are often poor in nitrogen and phosphorus. The relative proportion of mycorrhizal plants has been found to decrease along with increasing altitude, suggesting that the advantage of the mycorrhizal symbiosis may change along an altitudinal gradient. This may be related to the environmental factors that possibly constrain the amount of photosynthesized carbon to be shared with mycorrhizal fungi. We propose a simple optimization model for root colonization by fungal symbionts and analyze the advantages of mycorrhizas in relation to the nutrient use efficiency of photosynthesis (PNUE), the kinetics of nutrient uptake and the soil nutrient levels. Our model suggests that mycorrhizas are not usually favoured at low PNUE values. At low nutrient levels, mycorrhizas may be advantageous if they have a lower threshold concentration of nutrient uptake (xmin) compared to non-mycorrhizal roots. If mycorrhizal roots have a higher maximum capacity of nutrient uptake (Vmax), mycorrhizas can be favourable for the host plant even at relatively low nutrient concentrations and at relatively low PNUE. Consequently, the possible patterns along altitudinal gradients essentially depend on PNUE. If the soil nutrient concentration is constant and PNUE decreases, the advantage of mycorrhizal symbiosis declines independently of the nutrient uptake kinetics. If PNUE remains constant and the soil nutrient concentration decreases along with increasing altitude, the emerging colonization pattern (either increasing, decreasing or intermediate) depends on the nutrient uptake kinetics. Additionally, if both PNUE and the soil nutrient concentration decrease, several patterns may emerge, depending on the nutrient uptake kinetics.
  • Ruotsalainen, Department of Biology, Botanical Museum, Box 3000, FIN-90014 University of Oulu, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: annu.ruotsalainen@oulu.fi (email)
  • Tuomi, Department of Biology, Box 3000, FIN-90014 University of Oulu, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Väre, Botanical Museum, Finnish Museum of Natural History, Box 7, FIN-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 564, category Research article
Brett G. Purdy, S. Ellen Macdonald, Mark R. T. Dale. (2002). The regeneration niche of white spruce following fire in the mixedwood boreal forest. Silva Fennica vol. 36 no. 1 article id 564. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.564
Early establishment of white spruce (Picea glauca) in mixedwood boreal forest stands following fire was examined at several times-since-fire (1-, 2-, 4-, 6-, 14-years). Abiotic and biotic conditions in the stands were assessed at two scales, tree plot (5 m x 5 m) and microsite (1 m x 1 m), along with presence, density and height of white spruce seedlings. Germination and survival of seed sown 1- and 4-years post fire were quantified. Survival and growth of nursery-grown seedlings, and mycorrhizal colonization, survival and growth of sterile seedlings, planted 1-year post-fire were assessed. At the tree plot scale, presence of white spruce seedlings 1-year post-fire could be reliably predicted by organic layer depth and distance to and strength of seed source. In contrast, none of the biotic or abiotic factors measured was strongly correlated with occurrence or density of white spruce seedlings 6- and 14- years post-fire. At the microsite scale, seedling recruitment immediately post-fire was limited to a distinct subset of available microsites (greater % cover of downed wood and moss, lower % cover of litter and herbaceous vegetation). Likewise, seedling occurrence in older burns was associated with distinct microsite conditions; although this was more likely an effect of white spruce presence, rather than the cause. Less than 3% of seed sown 1 yr post-fire survived to become 1yr old germinants, survival was 41% over the next three years. Availability of suitable regeneration microsites declines rapidly with time-since-fire; less than 0.3% of seed sown 4 yrs post-fire survived one year. High rates of mycorrhizal colonization were found on white spruce seedlings planted 1-year post-fire, including early and late stage fungal species. Microsite characteristics were only weakly correlated with mycorrhizal fungal communities. We propose that immediate post-fire recruitment of white spruce is a key process in mixedwood boreal succession.
  • Purdy, Dept. of Renewable Resources, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2E3 ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Macdonald, Dept. of Renewable Resources, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2E3 ORCID ID:E-mail: ellen.macdonald@ualberta.ca (email)
  • Dale, Dale, Dept. of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2E9 ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Review article

article id 551, category Review article
Anders Dahlberg. (2002). Effects of fire on ectomycorrhizal fungi in Fennoscandian boreal forests. Silva Fennica vol. 36 no. 1 article id 551. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.551
Fire, the primary natural disturbance factor in Fennoscandian boreal forests, is considered to have exerted major selection pressure on most boreal forest organisms. However, recent studies show that few ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi appear to have evolved post-fire adaptations, no succession of EM fungi following fire is apparent after low intensity fires, and only two EM fungal taxa exclusively fruit at post-fire conditions. In this paper I review the present knowledge of effects of forest fire on EM fungal communities in Fennscandian boreal forests, put into perspective by a comparison from other parts of the world. Characteristically, these boreal forests consist of less than a handful of tree species, e.g. Scots pine and Norway spruce, while the below ground communities of EM fungi is impressively species rich with presently more than 700 known taxa. Commonly, forest fires in Fennoscandia have been of low intensity, with a considerable portion of the trees surviving and the organic humus layer partly escaping combustion. Hence, EM fungi appear to largely have evolved under conditions characterised by a more or less continuous presence of their hosts. In fact, the composition of EM fungi within a forest appear be more variable due to spatial variation than due to wildfire. However, in areas with high intensity burns and high tree mortality, most EM fungi may locally be killed. Thus, the legacy of EM fungi following wildfire depends on the survival of trees, which determine the potential for mycorrhizal growth, and the combustion and heating of the organic soil, which directly correlate to mortality of mycorrhizas. The questions if and to what degree fires may be of significance for yet unidentified spatiotemporal dynamics of EM fungal populations and communities are discussed. Recent experiments indicate a few EM fungi are favoured by high intensity burn conditions whereas others disappear. The consequences of wildfires in temperate conifer forests differ considerably from those in boreal forests. Wildfires in temperate conifer forests are typically high intensity stand-replacing fires that cause a total combustion of organic layers. Subsequently, pre-fire EM fungal communities are largely eradicated and a succession of post-fire EM fungi is initiated.
  • Dahlberg, Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 7026, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: anders.dahlberg@artdata.slu.se (email)

Category: Research note

article id 118, category Research note
Audrius Menkis, Remigijus Bakys, Vaidotas Lygis, Rimvydas Vasaitis. (2011). Mycorrhization, establishment and growth of outplanted Picea abies seedlings produced under different cultivation systems. Silva Fennica vol. 45 no. 2 article id 118. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.118
In forest nurseries seedlings are commonly produced using different cultivation systems which may have a profound effect on the extent of root colonisation by ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi and, consequently, on subsequent performance of the outplanted seedlings under field conditions. In this study, we compare effects of bare-root and containerised cultivation systems on mycorrhization, establishment and growth of nursery-produced Picea abies. One hectare experimental plantation was established on poor fertility sandy site. In total, 1250 seedlings of each treatment were planted in rows as ten individual replicates. The results of this study showed that production of P. abies seedlings using containerised system can yield abundant ECM colonisation of seedling roots and significantly improve seedling survival in the field. Some reduction in height increment may occur during the first years as a possible cost for support of ECMs. Study demonstrated that selection of proper cultivation system might result in similar or higher mycorrhization and survival rates of outplanted seedlings than achieved by expensive and laborious artificial mycorrhization.
  • Menkis, Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Uppsala BioCenter, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 7026, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: audrius.menkis@slu.se (email)
  • Bakys, Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Uppsala BioCenter, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 7026, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Lygis, Laboratory of Phytopathogenic Microorganisms, Institute of Botany at the Nature Research Centre, Vilnius, Lithuania ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Vasaitis, Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Uppsala BioCenter, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 7026, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Article

article id 7161, category Article
Olavi Laiho. (1965). Further studies on the ectendotrophic mycorrhiza. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 79 no. 3 article id 7161. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7161

There has not been complete agreement as to what is meant by ectendotrophic mycorrhizae, and there is a wide variety of opinion among authors on mycorrhizal terminology. In this paper ectendotrophic mycorrhizae are defined to be short roots with Hartig net and intracellular hyphae in the cortex. A mantle and digestion of intracellular hyphae may be found but are not necessary. In the study of Mikola (1965) ectendotrophic mycorrhiza was found to be common in Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seedlings in Finnish nurseries. The mycorrhizae had always similar structure and the mycelium isolated from the seedlings (E-strains) was similar. The aim of this study was to find out what kind of ectendotrophic mycorrhizae exist in forests and nurseries outside Finland, what kind of mycorrhizae do the E-strains isolated from Scots pine form with other tree species, and are these associations symbiotic.

Only one type of ectendotrophic mycorrhiza was found on the 600 short roots collected from the continents of Europa and America. The type was similar to the one described by Mikola: the mycelium is coarse and forms a strong Hartig net, and intracellular infection is heavy. Evidence is convincing that this structure was formed by the same fungus species. The species is unidentified. Mycorrhizae synthesized by E-strain with six spruce species, fir, hemloch and Douglas fir were all ectotrophic.

The E-type ectendotrophic mycorrhizae proved to be a balanced symbiosis. The seedlings of 13 tree species inoculated with the E-strain grew in the experiment better than the controls. The observation that ectendotrophic mycorrhizae dominates in the nurseries but is seldom found in forests, and then only in seedlings growing in the forest, was confirmed in the study. In synthesis experiments E-strain formed either ecto- or ectendotrophic mycorrhiza depending on the tree species.

  • Laiho, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 7160, category Article
Peitsa Mikola. (1965). Studies on the ectendotrophic mycorrhiza of Scots pine in Finland. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 79 no. 2 article id 7160. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7160

The differences between different types of mycorrhiza; endomycorrhiza, ectomycorrhiza and ectendomycorrhiza, and the use of the terms have been variable in the earlier research. Studied of mycorrhiza in Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) seedlings may suggest that the conditions affect which kind of mycorrhiza develops in the seedlings. This study is aimed mainly at finding out whether the difference of ectotrophic and ectendotrophic mycorrhizae depends on fungal symbionts or envirionmental conditions. Furthermore, the occurrence of ectendotrophic mycorrhiza in Finland under various conditions was studied, and experiments on the physiology and ecology of the mycorrhiza and the fungal partner were conducted.

The ectendotrophic mycorrhiza as described in this paper has proved to be very common on Scots pine in Finnish nurseries, but it was not found in Norway spruce seedlings. The results did not support the hypothesis presented in some earlier studies that ectendotrophic mycorrhiza is more parasitic than the other mycorrhizal fungi. The nursery survey showed that no correlation existed between the size and vigour of the seedlings and the presence of ectendotrophic mycorrhiza. Furthermore, greenhouse-grown seedlings with and without the fungus grew equally well. The type of mycorrhiza was, however, almost exclusively confined to young (1–3-years-old) seedlings and to nursery soils. The experiments indicates also that ectendomycorrhizal fungus has a very wide ecological amplitude in regard to light intensity, soil fertility, acidity, and humus content. It has, however, a weak competitive ability in natural forest soils against the indigenous fungal population. When the seedlings were transplanted from the nursery to forest soil, their mycorrhizal population was largely changed.

  • Mikola, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 7151, category Article
Peitsa Mikola, Olavi Laiho, Jorma Eerikäinen, Kari Kuvaja. (1964). The effect of slash burning on the commencement of mycorrhizal association. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 77 no. 3 article id 7151. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7151

Prescribed burning is a common silvicultural practice in northern Europe, intended to destroy the slash and ground vegetation and to reduce the thickness of the raw humus layer prior reforestation. The purpose of the experiments was to study whether there are any differences in the commencement and early development of mycorrhizal infection between burned and unburned areas. A clear-cutting area was burned on May 1961. The soil was rocky moraine, the forest type was Vaccinium type. Two weeks after burning Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) was sown in patches.

According to the results, mycorrhizal infection took place on the unburned area earlier than on the burned. The difference was relatively small, perhaps 1–2 weeks. Although burning kills mycorrhizal fungi, it did not cause serious harm to the seedlings, on the contrary, the favourable influence of burning was more distinct. The high temperatures caused by the fire are restricted in the soil in a prescribed burning only a few centimetres deep. Although the mycorrhizal fungi are concentrated in a very thin surface layer of the soil, some mycorrhizae are situated deeper, and from there the fungi are able to infect roots and spread back to the surface layer. The fire also rises the pH of the soil, which can be harmful for mycorrhizal fungi. Even this effect, however, is limited to a thin surface layer.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Mikola, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Laiho, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Eerikäinen, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Kuvaja, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 7150, category Article
Olavi Laiho, Peitsa Mikola. (1964). Studies on the effect of some eradicants on mycorrhizal development in forest nurseries. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 77 no. 2 article id 7150. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7150

Mycorrhizal association is a characteristic feature of the trees of the northern coniferous forests. The purpose of the present study was to determine what influence some fungicides and herbicides regularly used in Finnish nurseries have on formation and development mycorrhizal in Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) seedlings. The results are based mainly on field experiments in nurseries. First the initiation of mycorrhiza was described in untreated seedlings.

In the first growing season mycorrhizal infection commences fairly late even under normal conditions, i.e. 6–7 weeks after seeding and 3–4 weeks after the formation of the first short roots. Soil disinfectants are commonly used in nurseries before seeding, and they are supposed to evaporate or disintegrate in a few days or 1–2 weeks. In pure culture experiments mycorrhizal fungi proved several times more sensitive than parasitic and indifferent soil moulds to herbicides and fungicides, but in field experiments the delay of mycorrhizal infection caused by them does not seem to harm the seedlings. In the second summer differences of mycorrhizal relations between treated and control plots disappeared. Accordingly, the influence of biocides on mycorrhizae, when applied in the customary concentrations, does not extend beyond the first growing season.

Methyl bromide and SMDC retarded mycorrhiza formation distinctly, while formaldehyde and allyl alcohol had no effect. Apart from not retarding mycorrhizae, formaldehyde and allyl alcohol promoted seedling growth and favoured Trichoderma viride in the soil. Trichoderma is known to be antagonistic to many fungi.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Laiho, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Mikola, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 7476, category Article
Leo Heikurainen. (1958). Sekametsiköiden juuristoista ojitetulla suolla. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 67 no. 2 article id 7476. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7476
English title: Root systems of mixed forest in drained peatlands.

Draining transforms root systems of trees growing in peatlands towards the ones growing on mineral soil. However, even after efficient draining the root systems differ from the root systems of trees growing on mineral soil. This investigation concentrates on root systems of forests of similar mire types growing in similar draining conditions but having different tree species compositions. The peatland, situated in Pieksämäki in Southern Finland, was drained in 1937. Sample plots, measured in 1956, consisted of mixed forest of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.), Norway spruce (Picea abies L. Karst.) and birch (Betula sp.) in different compositions, and were in natural condition.

The sedge pine bog studied in this investigation was shown to have larger total amount of roots and mycorrhiza than in previously studied dwarf shrub pine bogs. This reflects better growth conditions of the better site. The depth of root system was, however, similar. Root systems of birch were deeper than those of the coniferous tree species. Differences between Scots pine and Norway spruce were small. Corresponding differences between the species were found in the density and total number of mycorrhizas. The abundance of mycorrhizas in the roots of birch increased in deeper layers of peat, but decreased especially in spruce roots. In earlier studies the abundance of mycorrhizas decreased in the roots growing in deeper layers in pure Scots pine stands, but no such variation was seen in this study. The result suggest that the deep root system of birch may affect also the root systems of the coniferous trees. On the other hand, birch roots can have advantage over the coniferous trees.

The PDF includes a summary in German.

  • Heikurainen, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 7466, category Article
Leo Heikurainen. (1955). Rämemännikön juuriston rakenne ja kuivatuksen vaikutus siihen. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 65 no. 3 article id 7466. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7466
English title: Structure of Scots pine root systems in a pine swamp and effect of draining on the structure.
Original keywords: räme; ojitus; juuristo; mänty; mykorritsa; suo

The root system of a Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) growing on a peatland is restricted, according to earlier studies, on the top layers of the peat above the groundwater level. Drainage of the peatland affects growth of the root system. This investigation aims at studying the root systems on the point of view of draining of peatlands. The structure and distribution, and the growth of mycorrhiza in Scots pine roots in pine swamps varying from natural state to well drained state is studied.

The study shows that Scots pine on pine swamps has more extensive root system than has earlier assumed, it is common to find 1,000 m of roots in one cubic meter in a healthy stand. The trees reach this density of roots early on. In a drained peatland, the total root length is markedly higher than in a similar stand in natural state. The root systems proved to be very shallow. Even in a well-drained site the roots did not grow deeper than 20 cm. 70% of all roots were found in the upper 5 cm layer of peat, and 90% in the upper 10 cm layer. Root systems were deeper in drained peatlands, but the difference was small. In a site in natural state the average depth of the roots was 4 cm, and in a drained site 5 cm. About 85% of the roots were under 1 mm of diameter. Short roots were found only in the fine roots. Draining increases strongly the number of short roots. Mycorrhizas of the types A, B, C and D as well as pseudomychorrizas were found in the pine roots.

The PDF includes a summary in German.

  • Heikurainen, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5408, category Article
Olavi Laiho. (1990). Mykorritsat ja niiden vaikutus metsään. Silva Fennica vol. 24 no. 1 article id 5408. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a15560
English title: The significance of mycorrhizae to forest.

While the most common type of mycorrhizae is endomycorrhizae, ectomycorrhizae dominate in the case of coniferous trees. Pine, in particular, has a strong association with mycorrhizae. Mycorrhizae enable trees to take up water and nutrients much more efficiently than the roots themselves. The fungus, in return, obtain carbohydrates and is able to grow and fruit. Mycorrhizal fungi are probably numbered in their thousands but so far few are known. Knowledge about their physiology, in particular, is lacking and studies dealing with their isolation and inoculation, which may be commercially valuable, remain unpublished. A new challenge for mycorrhiza research is the effects of air pollution. Forest suffering from extensive air pollution have few mycorrhizal fungi., infection is weak and the number of root deformations is high. As good mycorrhizae are important to tree health, there is a particular need to intensify mycorrhiza research.

The PDF includes an abstract in English.

  • Laiho, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5408, category Article
Olavi Laiho. (1990). Mykorritsat ja niiden vaikutus metsään. Silva Fennica vol. 24 no. 1 article id 5408. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a15560
English title: The significance of mycorrhizae to forest.

While the most common type of mycorrhizae is endomycorrhizae, ectomycorrhizae dominate in the case of coniferous trees. Pine, in particular, has a strong association with mycorrhizae. Mycorrhizae enable trees to take up water and nutrients much more efficiently than the roots themselves. The fungus, in return, obtain carbohydrates and is able to grow and fruit. Mycorrhizal fungi are probably numbered in their thousands but so far few are known. Knowledge about their physiology, in particular, is lacking and studies dealing with their isolation and inoculation, which may be commercially valuable, remain unpublished. A new challenge for mycorrhiza research is the effects of air pollution. Forest suffering from extensive air pollution have few mycorrhizal fungi., infection is weak and the number of root deformations is high. As good mycorrhizae are important to tree health, there is a particular need to intensify mycorrhiza research.

The PDF includes an abstract in English.

  • Laiho, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5339, category Article
Peitsa Mikola. (1988). Ectendomycorrhiza of conifers. Silva Fennica vol. 22 no. 1 article id 5339. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a15496

The fungal symbiont of ectendomycorrhizae is an ascomycete Wilcoxina (Tricharina) mikolae Yang & Korf. It forms ectendomycorrhizae with Pinus and Larix and ectomycorrhizae with Abies, Picea, Pseudotsuga and Tsuga. It is common in forest nurseries around the world. After transplanting the seedlings into natural forest soil, indegenous fungi rapidly replace Wilcoxina. Inoculation of nursery soil with Wilcoxina is recommended if soil has been sterilized or for other reasons mycorrhizal fungi are absent.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Mikola, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 5339, category Article
Peitsa Mikola. (1988). Ectendomycorrhiza of conifers. Silva Fennica vol. 22 no. 1 article id 5339. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a15496

The fungal symbiont of ectendomycorrhizae is an ascomycete Wilcoxina (Tricharina) mikolae Yang & Korf. It forms ectendomycorrhizae with Pinus and Larix and ectomycorrhizae with Abies, Picea, Pseudotsuga and Tsuga. It is common in forest nurseries around the world. After transplanting the seedlings into natural forest soil, indegenous fungi rapidly replace Wilcoxina. Inoculation of nursery soil with Wilcoxina is recommended if soil has been sterilized or for other reasons mycorrhizal fungi are absent.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Mikola, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 7540, category Article
Olavi Laiho. (1970). Paxillus involutus as a mycorrhizal symbiont of forest trees. Acta Forestalia Fennica no. 106 article id 7540. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7540

The host range of Paxillus involulutus includes a wide range of species. These mycorrhizae can be identified in the field by their appearance. A positive correlation was found between the numbers of mycorrhizae and sporophores formed by the species. It is concluded that Paxillus involutus does not form sporophores when growing by a saprophytic mode of nutrition. In the presence of trees, the species fruits to varying extents: in poor closed stands hardly at all and in fertile stands profusely. After partial cutting, soil scarification, draining and application of nitrogen, its fruiting increases markedly. Consequently, growth of Paxillus involutus in raw humus is arrested primarily due to deficiency of nitrogen.

In pure culture the amount of submerged mycelium on agar is very limited, but the aerial mycelium profuse. In the latter, sclerotia are also formed. The pH and temperature requirements may vary between individual strains. The species is also able to utilize starch. Nitrogen is utilized in the form of both ammonium and nitrate, and organic nitrogen sources.

Paxillus involutus forms a balanced symbiosis, even when the host is relatively weak and the fungus relatively virulent. It survives rather well in Scots pine seedlings planted in various sites; moreover, the initial development of these seedlings is better than that of nonmycorrhizal seedlings.

This study emphasizes the need for thorough investigations concerning whether mycorrhizal fungi are capable of fruiting when subsisting by a saprophytic mode of nutrition. In pure culture experiments several strains should be used. Semi-aseptic synthesis is sometimes surprisingly rapid, its major handicap being the limited number of fungal symbionts that can be successfully inoculated. In both this and aseptic synthesis mycorrhizal associations can be formed whose existence in nature is questionable.

  • Laiho, ORCID ID:E-mail:

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