What is mycelium?

Alena Mikhailova
Alena Mikhailova
February 9, 2015
What is mycelium?

Studying biology, you can stumble upon a lot of fairly incomprehensible terms. One of them is mycelium. This term is not very common, so many people have a question about its meaning.

Below you can learn about what is mycelium, and what forms it can be.

What does the term "mycelium" mean?

Mycelium is a mycelium, which is the vegetative body of fungi and actinomycetes (bacteria that have the makings of a mushroom); the latter have the appearance of thin filaments. They branch and develop in the substrate and on its surface. Thus, we can say that it is from the mycelium that the fungus develops.

It is worth noting that the mushrooms also have non-cellular mycelium, which does not have intercellular septa. In other words, such a species is one large cell with several nuclei.

Forms of mycelium

Mycelium has several forms. Let's look at each of them in more detail.

  • The films are fairly dense flat plexuses of hyphae (branching tube systems), they can have various sizes and thickness.With the help of them, the flesh is attached to the substrate.
  • Cords - filamentous fungal hyphae, fused into one. They serve to attach the substrate and its further distribution, can branch.
  • Rhizomorphs - large cords (accrete fungal filamentous hyphae), reaching up to 5 meters; they have dark dense external hyphal strings and internal light friable cords.
  • Rhizoctonia - the thinnest cords through which the mycelium is attached and spread.
  • Sclerotia are dense hyphal tangles, where there is a huge number of thread-like branches. Due to them, the fungus is easier to tolerate adverse factors.
  • Stromas - grow together with the plant tissue and preserve the spores of the fungus.
  • The fruit body forms the sporulation of the fungus.

Grow oyster mushroom from mycelium.

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