Silver Dragon Flower


Silver Dragon Flower

ぎんりょうそう (銀竜草) Monotropastrum globosum


一般には其の花を 錫杖草 と言う名前で呼ぶのは、きんりょうそう と言い難いからでしょうか。

銀竜草も ぎんりょうそう, ぎんりゅうそう と発音するんですよ。


The achlorophyllous plant Monotropastrum globosum

is a mono-specific species in the Monotropoideae distributed in East Asia from the Himalayas to Japan and must depend on fungal root symbionts for the supply of carbon sources.

This study was conducted to identify the fungal symbionts associated with M. globosum. A total of 29 individuals were collected at 5 different forests in the central Japan. The root system of M. globosum was intermingled within and among individuals forming root balls.

The pattern of root branching was simple and found to be less than third order lateral roots. On a light microscopy, fungal penetration pegs were frequently observed at the outer cortical cells as well as the presence both of fungal sheath and Hartig net. This confirmed that M. globosum forms monotropoid mycorrhizas. Ten mycorrhizal types were classified based on morphological differences observed on the surface layer of fungal sheaths. Among them, fungal symbionts of 3 types possessed net prosenchyma- or felt prosenchyma-like fungal arrangements with characteristic shapes of cystidia and were considered belonging to the genus Russula.

In addition, one type may also be colonized by Russula sp. because of a distinctive hyphal arrangement forming regular synenchyma with intracellular latex. Laticiferous hyphae were distributed over the fungal sheath of one type suggesting that causal fungus would be a member of Lactarius. These results indicate that fungal symbionts associated with M. globosum are partly specialized in members of the Russulaceae.

© Y. Matsuda, A. Yamada


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Daruma Museum, Japan

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