Fungi are our Friends: Introduction to Mycorrhizae

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Fungi are our Friends: Introduction to Mycorrhizae

  • date: May 6, 2017
  • time: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
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  • Learn about the denizens of nature’s “hidden half”: the subterranean world of mycorrhizal fungi.
    This will be a combination of hands-on microscopy and an entertaining and informal powerpoint discussion of the history of mycorrhizal ecology, the environmental impacts of inoculum spread, and the role of mycorrhizal ecology in gardening and agriculture. Although the spring is generally not optimal to find mycorrhizal mushrooms, options using samples obtained from the grocery store might be possible.

    Participants will learn how to identify mycorrhizal and non-mycorrhizal roots, the benefits (or lack thereof) of commercial inoculum, which commonly foraged mushrooms are mycorrhizal, and land and garden stewardship methods for maximum mycorrhizal diversity.

    This class will promote community building by deepening the connection of participants to both their local wild areas and their home gardens. The effects of permaculture, fertilizer overuse, and monocropping versus polycropping will be discussed, encouraging better soil care.



    Instructor: Andrew Tomes, WISErg Corporation

    Andrew Tomes grew up in central Pennsylvania and did his undergraduate studies at the University of Maine, where he completed a BS in Botany and a BA in English and worked in wetland restoration. He recently completed an MS in Ecology at the School of Environmental Sciences and Forestry in Syracuse, New York, where he studied the mycorrhizal associations of the American chestnut and worked as a volunteer with the Eastern Farmworkers’ Association.

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