Merulius tremellosus Merulius tremellosus

Crust fungi

        Crust fungi have fruiting bodies that are more-or-less flat and closely adherent to the surface of the decaying log or other woody debris on which they occur. Some examples are so thin and closely adherent that they have the same general appearance of a coat of colored paint. The upper exposed surface of the fruiting body is the spore-bearing surface, and it may be smooth, wrinkled or composed of small pores or spines. Most crust fungi are hard or tough, but a few are somewhat gelatinous. Like a number of other groups of basidiomycetes, the crust fungi are now known to be rather heterogeneous, and the traditional concept of these fungi lumped together species that were not closely related. The crust fungi are mostly decomposers of wood, but some species are mycorrhizal and a few are pathogens.

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