The Whole Fungus

Perhaps by posing a few questions I can give you some idea of what you may expect to find as you browse through the twenty-seven chapters in the two volumes of The Whole Fungus.

  1. Do you know what anamorphs, teleomorphs and holomorphs are? These terms are central to the theme of the books, and are defined in Chapter 3.
  2. Do you know how long the phenomenon of pleomorphism has exercised the minds of mycologists; and how ancient it is? These questions are answered in Chapters 2 and 26, respectively.
  3. Do you know how to differentiate scolecospores and helicospores from other Saccardoan spore types? You'll find what we hope are unequivocal delineations in Chapter 5.
  4. Do you know that one method of conidium development can be transmuted into another and that the same fungus can use two techniques concurrently? These important "aberrations" are discussed in Chapters 6 and 7, respectively.
  5. Do you know how present-day distributions of fungi can be interpreted in terms of plate tectonics ("continental drift")? This is attempted in Chapter 8.
  6. Do you know how classifications of ascomycetous anamorphs and teleomorphs affect one another? Chapters 9 - 12, 15 and 17 address this question.
  7. Do you know that the basic Ascomycotan dichotomy between unitunicates and bitunicates can be challenged? Chapter 13 shows where.
  8. Do you know that certain physiological factors stimulate sporulation in some fungi, but suppress it in others? Chapter 16 presents incontrovertible evidence.
  9. Do you know that the "aquatic" (or, preferably, "amphibious") Hyphomycetes include some of the best examples of convergent evolution in the whole of the fungi? The evidence is in Chapter 18.
  10. Do you know that Agarics (and many other Basidiomycetes) also possess anamorphs? Chapters 19, 20 and 21 are concerned with these unjustifiably neglected life-forms.
  11. Do you know that some "yeasts" are entirely mycelial? Chapter 22 should convince you.
  12. Do you know that a kind of doliporel septum is found among the Zygomycetes? Chapter 23 discusses this phenomenon.
  13. Do you know why we should stop calling the "pseudo-taxa" of conidial fungi, 'form species' and 'form genera' ? Chapters 26 and 27 will tell you.

Has that string of questions whetted your appetite? I hope so.

"Every serious student of mycology...ought to obtain these fascinating, inexpensive volumes. Buy it, get your library to buy it, get your students to buy it, and put aside a week or so to sit down and read it cover to cover. Kananaskis II was a milestone."

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