Some technical research into the life cycle of a mushroom. After learning so much about mushrooms of late, its actually quite exciting to delve into the finer points in how such a fascinating organism comes to life.
The life cycle of a mushroom can be summarised into 3 phases: Mycelium, Fruiting Body and Spores.
A couple of Haploid mycelia begin reproduction to produce dikaryotic mycelium. The mycelium biomass (roots) is able to extract nutrients from their environment while protecting themselves from other organisms. At this stage, many beneficial compounds, known as Extracellular compounds, are produced and released into the ground.
As the mushroom is ready to reproduce, most mushroom species will produce a fruiting body, which is most commonly referred as the actual mushroom being the most visible part of the fungi.
Here the fusion of two nuclei cells (process known as Karyogamy), will undergo meiosis to produce haploid nuclei, or basidiospores. The spores are then released by the fruiting body and dispersed by the wind, where they will find a new suitable place to germinate and start the reproductive cycle again.
Mushroom spore release
Once their spores are released, they may live up to a few days before they collapse and decay, providing nutrients to the surrounding plants and wildlife.
To begin with, I will explore the early stages of myceluim as it grows and develops into a fruiting body. However, if things go well, I would be more than happy to try to do the whole cycle in its entirety.