Story: Fungi

Black truffle

Black truffle

Many fungi have a symbiotic relationship with a plant. The most famous is probably the Périgord black truffle Tuber melanosporum, a prized delicacy that forms in association with the roots of certain forest trees. It grows naturally in lime-rich soils of Spain, France and Italy. The truffles are the fruiting bodies of the fungus and are formed under the soil. Traditionally, pigs were used to sniff them out, but dogs are increasingly used for the task. New Zealand’s first truffle plantation was established in 1987 near Gisborne. Oak and hazel trees were inoculated with the fungus, and the first truffles were produced five years later.

Using this item

Landcare Research – Manaaki Whenua
Photograph by Peter Buchanan

© Copyright image. All rights reserved. Permission from Manaaki Whenua: Landcare Research New Zealand Limited must be obtained before the re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Peter Buchanan, 'Fungi - Mycorrhizal fungi', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 July 2024)

Story by Peter Buchanan, published 24 Sep 2007