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Mycology

Do trees really communicate?

July 28, 2023

If you think trees are solitary beings that exist alone in the forest, think again. It turns out that trees, like all plants, form a social network of sorts. This network is made possible by mycorrhizal fungi, which act as a bridge between individual trees and provide them with essential nutrients to ensure their growth and survival.

 

Mycelium, a type of fungal network, is made up of tiny fibers that can span great distances in soil and even form complex underground webs. These networks act as the communication highway for trees, allowing them to share resources and communicate with each other. In fact, many scientists believe that these mycelial networks are essential to trees’ survival and growth—so much so, that they are now referred to as the Wood Wide Web.

 

What’s especially interesting is how these networks form. It turns out, mycorrhizal fungi grow on and around tree roots, forming an intricate mesh between trees of the same species that can span miles across a forest. This web allows for nutrient-sharing and communication between trees, which is essential for their survival and growth.

 

Not only are these fungi important for the trees, but they also have a major impact on humans as well. Mycorrhizal fungi play an important role in soil health by helping to break down organic matter and enriching the soil with key minerals and nutrients. This helps to ensure healthier plants—and in turn, healthier people.

In short, mycorrhizal fungi are key to the health and survival of trees—and humans, too. Understanding and preserving these social networks is essential if we want our environment to stay healthy and balanced for years to come. So take a moment to appreciate the power of nature’s intricate web—the Wood Wide Web. With a bit of effort, we can help to ensure its preservation and sustainability for generations to come.

 

With this newfound appreciation for mycorrhizal fungi, you can now understand how important their role is in the environment—and why companies like ours that create materials with mushrooms are doing great things for our planet. So the next time you go out into the woods, take a moment to appreciate the power of fungi. They are truly nature’s unsung heroes!