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What is Ecto Mycorrhizae?

What is Ecto Mycorrhizae?

Mary Smith |

We recently added Endo & Ecto Mycorrhizae Root Boost at Mary's Heirloom Seeds.  Almost immediately I had an email from a customer asking "What the heck is Ecto Myco??"

First, I'd like to answer the question "What is Mycorrhizae?"
The word mycorrhizae (pronounced My-cor-rye-zay) refers to a group of fungi which form a mutually beneficial relationship with many plants. These fungi grow either inside of a plant’s roots or attach to the surface of a root. The fungi benefits from the plant’s food and nutrients and in turn send their hyphae (like small roots) out into the surrounding soil to absorb nutrients and water. So, mycorrhizae actually enhance a plant’s ability to take up nutrients and water. Because of this, research has shown that the presence of mycorrhizae also help plants deal with drought and some diseases. 

LIVE soil with organic soil amendments

Next, lets go over Endo Mycorrhizae.  From our website,
Mary's Root Boost Mycorrhizae is Endo Mycorrhizae which is the type that is beneficial to over 80% of plant species including most leafy green plants and vegetables.
Mycorrhizae is a fungi that has a beneficial relationship with a plants roots. When Mycorrhizal fungi comes into contact with a plants roots it begins to colonize, or multiply, on the roots and begins to spread out into the surrounding soil. These strands of mycorrhizal fungi effectively become an extension of the roots and can increase the absorption area of a plants root system by 10 to 1,000 times. This allows the root system a more efficient intake of nutrients and water.  

Endo Mycorrhizae

NOW for our newest addition at Mary's Heirloom Seeds...a combo!!! Endo & Ecto Myco Root Boost

What's in on Endo & Ecto Mycorrhizae Root Boost?
A Super fine blend of 4 species of endomycorrhizae, 7 species of ectomycorrhizae and nutrient rich humic acids   *Water Soluble*

What is Endo Myco?
Endomycorrhizal fungi (more commonly referred to as endomycorrhizae) is one of the major types of known mycorrhizae which differs from the another type of mycorrhizae, ectomycorrhizae, in structure. Unlike ectomycorrhizae which form a system of hyphae that grow around the cells of the root, the hyphae of the endomycorrhizae not only grow inside the root of the plant but penetrate the root cell walls and become enclosed in the cell membrane as well . This makes for a more invasive symbiotic relationship between the fungi and the plant. The penetrating hyphae create a greater contact surface area between the hyphae of the fungi and the plant. This heightened contact facilitates a greater transfer of nutrients between the two. 


What is Ectomycorrhizae?

"Ectomycorrhizal Fungi are, economically, one of the most important groups of fungi. These are the fungi that form a symbiotic relationship with a plant forming a sheath around the root tip of the plant. The fungus then forms a Hartig Net which means that there is an inward growth of hyphae (fungal cell growth form) which penetrates the plant root structure. There are actually seven types of mycorrhiza and 90% of plants form mycorrhiza with fungi, but ectomycorrhizal refers to this sheath forming type.

The fungus then gains carbon  and other essential organic substances from the tree and in return helps the trees take up water, mineral salts and metabolites. It can also fight off parasites, predators such as nematodes and soil pathogens. Indeed, most forest trees are highly dependant on their fungal partners and in areas of poor soil, could possibly not even exist without them. Thus in forest management, if we do not manage for the mycorrhizal fungi, we could be damaging the trees."

Instructions for Endo & Ecto Mycorrhizae Root Boost: mix 1/2 teaspoon per gallon of water for use as a soil drench for established plants.
SEED SOAK: mix 1/4 teaspoon per gallon of water. Soak tomato and cucumber seeds for 48 hours. Most seeds for 24 hours.



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We hope you have enjoyed yet another informative growing article here at Mary's Heirloom Seeds.  If you have additional questions please ask!


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1 comment

I am very interested in your ecto-mycorrhizae for inoculating the forest floor that currently has many eucalyptus and acacia and oak…the eucalyptus and acacia are being removed slowly. What kind of mycorhizae are these? From what types of mushroom? This is for a site in a forest in San Francisco, CA…and we do not want to introduce mycorhizzae that are not endemic to Northern California. Thank you so much for getting back with me.

Bridget Llanes,

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