How to Cite

Benzing, D., & Friedman, W. (1981). MYCOTROPHY: ITS OCCURRENCE AND POSSIBLE SIGNIFICANCE AMONG EPIPHYTIC ORCHIDACEAE. Selbyana, 5(3/4), 243–247. Retrieved from


Orchidaceae and mycotrophy are practically synonymous to many botanists. This impression could be illusory, however, its basis being little more than the long-known symbiotic germination of certain orchid seeds which is thought to be representative of all members of the family (Arditti, 1967, 1979; Warcup, 1975), and the persistence of extensive fungal infections in the root systems of at least a few terrestrial adults. Species native to soil do pass through heterotrophic phases assisted by mycobionts, some lasting years (e.g., Cypripedium) or, in exceptional cases where the phytobiont is an achlorophyllous saprophyte or epiparasite (e.g., Corallorhiza), a lifetime (Burgeff, 1936, 1959; Harley, 1969).


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