Call us. English en. Several cooks members of the Entre Tantas Association came to tell their anecdotes and experiences in their field, gastronomy, related to the so valuable black truffle and mycology in general. Another aspect to which they gave great importance is the high nutritional value of some mushrooms and fungi. At the end they offered a tasting of different truffled dishes. This Association Entre Tantas, which emerged in brings together cooks and producers who aim to promote the region's gastronomy and quality food.

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Para no hacerlo demasiado extenso lo dividimos en dos publicaciones en nuestro blog. Marc Andre Selosse en un trabajo que llevan a cabo sobre las trufas que quedan en el suelo tras pasar con los perros adelanta resultados preliminares.

Se trabaja desde tres frentes:. Por otra parte otro grupo formado por 16 degustadores ajenos al mundo de los aromas de la trufa, valorara aspectos sensoriales a lo largo del recorrido del proyecto, se pretende que apunten datos de los aromas de diferentes trufas. Estas son:. El riego en exceso en algunas plantaciones ha podrido trufas.

En , 16 Kg de uncinatum fueron recogidos. Adelantamos los temas de las otras exposiciones de las jornadas y que quedan para la segunda parte de nuestro blog:.

What is a mycorrhizated seedling? A mycorrhizated seedling is the symbiosis between a plant and a fungus. This association is the norm in plants and it is even common in nature for different fungi to be associated mycorrhizate at the same time with the same plant, something that is quite common in forest trees.

Drawing of a tree associated with a fungus that has produced a mushroom. The type of symbiosis that plants form with fungi varies from one type of plant to another. Generally, forest trees associate with a broad range of fungi, forming what are called ectomycorrhizas.

In these mycorrhizas, the aspect of the tree root is modified by the presence of the fungus, generating small lumps at the ends of the finest roots, in the form of minuscule match heads visible only in the laboratory with a stereoscopic microscope, magnifying glass, etc. Most other plants, including fruit trees, grapevines, bushes, herbaceous plants, etc. The truffles form ectomycorrhizas with forest species; in the case of the black truffle, it primarily associates with holm oaks, oaks, hazelnut trees, kermes oaks, etc.

Aspect of truffle mycorrhizas as seen through a stereoscopic magnifying glass. Mycorrhizas of the saffron milk cap mushroom Lactarius deliciosus on pine tree roots. Both tree and fungus benefit from this symbiotic relationship.

These advantages for both parties described here are only the most important ones. The enlarged white points in the pine roots are clearly visible: these are the mycorrhizas. From them emerges a tangle of white filaments, which are the hyphae, which form the mycelium and which expand into much more space in the soil than the roots themselves of the tree could.

Known examples of symbiosis between trees and fungi are truffles, saffron milk cap mushrooms, boletus, etc. When mushrooms appear in the forest in autumn, many of them live associated with trees, while others grow solely taking advantage of the organic material accumulated in the first layers of the soil saprophytes , there are even some fungi that can behave in both ways, as saprophytes and in symbiosis with plants, depending on the circumstances.

We can say that we are in part responsible for the boom and robust development currently enjoyed by truffle cultivation in some provinces of the center and north of Spain. We sold our first commercial seedling in late , and since then up to the present, numerous truffle growers have placed their trust in us.

The promoter and director of the company, Mariano Casas, a biologist by training, previously worked with Truficultur S. The truth is, the first years of trufficulture in Spain were not very successful, the seedlings commercialized in the s by a few Spanish companies and one or two French and Italian ones, were, in general, quite poor in terms of the quality of the mycorrhization, and thus the first plantations that should have served as examples to encourage others with their first fruits were instead disappointments.

The first facilities date from Some of the pamphlets we have used and distributed at trade fairs over the course of all thse years to promote the cultivation of black truffles. Explanatory pamphlet of the steps needed to set up a truffle plantation. Furthermore, the truffle was a big unknown and those who had heard of it associated it with the woodlands, mystery and… almost with magic… how could anyone even try to grow it!!

Faced with this situation, we promoted talks, we began to attend trade fairs, we held meetings, classes, etc. The very pebbly soil is favorable to the truffle. Over the course of all these years we have unquestionably accumulated a great deal of experience and knowledge that we enthusiastically place at the service of our clients. New details about those pillars on which trufficulture rests — soil, climate, seedling and cultural supports - are always being discovered and make it possible to undertake a plantation project with guarantees of success.

Lately, organized visits are being made to plantations in production where it seems that the fact of seeing truffles being harvested is enough of a condition for trufficulture of black truffles to be successfully set up in any soil and in any location, strictly because the seedling to be purchased is very well-prepared, according to the seller.

Other essential factors along with the seedling are also responsible for the final success of a plantation. Generally also in those visits, no mention is made of certain cultivation practices that can notably improve production. Examining root samples in the laboratory is essential to evaluating the quality of the mycorrhization of the seedlings we produce; examining roots collected in plantations at different ages is also important. While growing any agricultural crop requires knowledge and know-how to be successful, in the case of the truffle, the balance between two living beings, seedling and fungus, must be respected and presents additional difficulties.

In this sense, the previously mentioned aspects that significantly affect the success of the exploitation must be appropriately evaluated. In terms of the soil, if the slightest doubt arises over its suitability, a complete physical-chemical analysis will be necessary, as well as a correct interpretation of the results, to evaluate the possibilities of growing truffles. A quality seedling is always essential. The supports given to the cultivation will be defined by the location of the plantation, the type of soil analysis , the climate of the site, etc.

We consider the service of analyzing soil for trufficulture to be fundamental as a support for many agriculturalists who wonder if their land is suitable for growing truffles. The laboratory allows us to analyze soils for trufficulture, control the quality of the mycorrhizated seedlings, and analyze roots collected from the field. Over the course of these many years, we have visited a large number of estates, many of which have later established plantations.

We have analyzed hundreds of soil samples to evaluate the viability of truffles and whenever we have discovered serious obstacles to the success of the plantation, we have said so in no uncertain terms.

We have examined significant numbers of roots collected at plantations primarily of clients, but also of truffle growers who are not clients who have requested this service we offer; we have visited numerous plantations of different ages, some producing, others not, and also, as is only natural given our profession, we have provided advice to the many people who have placed their trust in us… and most importantly, we have observed with an open and receptive attitude, we have listened to experienced truffle hunters and expert truffle growers; we have attended and participated in scientific forums, carefully read the many existing publications on truffles, commented on and contrasted certain cultivation practices, etc.

Despite all of this, time has sometimes proven us wrong, but by recognizing our errors we have been able to change and improve our perspective on the subject and thus further aid the truffle grower. Collecting roots in the field and their handling and conservation until reaching the laboratory should be done correctly in order to obtain the maximum information. In terms of the mycorrhizated seedling, whenever a greater number of losses than normal has occurred at a plantation, and this has been attributable to the seedling, we have responded by replacing the seedlings.

View of the current facilities. Generally, the commercialized mycorrhizated truffle seedling is associated with the black truffle Tuber melanosporum , although very recently a small plantation has been realized with summer truffle Tuber aestivum , Tuber uncinatum , and lately we have also been consulted about Tuber borchii, the whitish or Borch truffle. In general, what is said about the seedling mycorrhizated with black truffle T. On the one hand, there is the quality of the mycorrhization and on the other, the good quality of the seedling in terms of health, development, type of container, root free of deformations, etc.

In terms of the aspect and development of the seedling , criteria of quality exist that are followed by the technicians of the various local and national governments when it comes time to purchase seedlings for public reforestation. We will describe below the most important points about the holm oak Quercus ilex , and the Portuguese or gall oak Quercus faginea , which are the two species most used in truffle plantations. Aspect of a well-developed holm oak. Seedlings with the following defects are not considered to be of top or commercial quality:.

This percentage refers to the fine apexes or finest root ends that can be mycorrhizated. Clearly, a seedling with a poor root development due to inadequate cultivation, poor handling, etc. Regarding the first seedling, a low number of mycorrhizas can give us a high percentage of mycorrhization and surpass the minimum requirement, while the second seedling can have a greater total number of mycorrhizated apexes but still not reach the required percentage.

With this reflection we want to point out the importance of a good root development. Some control methods for seedlings avoid this problem by speaking of a minimum number of mycorrhizated apexes and not giving all importance to the percentage. A well-developed root is necessary for a minimum number of mycorrhizas. Mycorrhizated seedlings may be rejected for various reasons:. Regarding the presence of fungi in the root other than Tuber melanosporum , various considerations should be kept in mind:.

Generally, various species of Tuber sp can appear Tuber brumale , Tuber aestivum , Tuber uncinatum , AD type mycorrhizas, etc. With Tuber brumale , the subject is more delicate because the period of its harvest coincides with that of the black truffle, and there are zones where both appear; furthermore, the aspect of their exterior peridium and interior gleba are similar, above all in some of the various ecotypes of T.

In recent years, the so-called Chinese truffle has appeared on the European market; it is cheaper and of lower quality and has the serious drawback of being similar in aspect to the black truffle and likewise coinciding in harvest times.

Distinguishing the difference between the mycorrhizas of these truffles and those of the black truffle is a matter for specialists. If the interior environment is not correctly managed, the higher temperatures and humidity of the greenhouses favor the rapid development of opportunist fungi that can mycorrhizate the root system of the young seedlings.

Mycorrhizations with Sphaerosporella sp , Thelephora sp. If their implantation in the root is high, however, it means that the mycorrhiza of the truffle is not abundant and the drawback is then the low mycorrhization of the seedling by the truffle. Finally, it should be pointed out that for the best productive results, one must begin with a high-quality seedling.

Some aspects of the seedling are clearly visible: we can see if it is well-developed, healthy, has abundant roots, we can see the type of container, if the root ball is compact, etc. The certification of the seedling by an external body is a good thing, but in the end the seedling delivered to the client is always the responsibility of the supplying company.

Currently, the work of the certifying center ends once the results of the control are given to the nursery. The controls are made on batches and each batch has a specific number of seedlings; each batch of seedlings is generally defined by the same inocula; the inocula consists of truffle spores that come from a specific number of truffles, etc.

Sometimes, not all of the controlled batches are suitable for sale, nor are all the batches controlled. Occasionally, it is necessary to make a later control of the same batch or it may simply be invalidated. It is common practice and logical for some truffle growers or associations who are making a combined purchase, to request sample seedlings before planting to examine the batch or batches that they will use to plant. We usually begin checking the batches to evaluate the state of mycorrhization in late September and throughout October.

What is a well-mycorrhizated seedling? An abundance of mycorrhizas of black truffle and the absence of contaminants. To achieve this, the inocula must be exclusively of T.

The process of mycorrhization and the precautions necessary to produce a quality seedling are the following:. This step is very important to avoid the introduction of unwanted species. Analysis of the spore solution in the laboratory before its use for inoculation, to check the adequacy of the spores.

Disinfection of the acorn to eliminate contaminants prior to its planting. The components to make the substrate and their proportions are chosen to ensure a mix with a texture and pH highly favorable to the formation of mycorrhizas of T. After almost 20 years of working in the mycorrhization of the black truffle, we have established a method that produces a quality mycorrhization of the entire batch; the seedlings present abundant mycorrhizas free of contaminants by early October in seedlings inoculated the previous spring.

The quality of the mycorrhization implies an abundance of black truffle mycorrhizas and the absence of contaminants other mycorrhizas that later in the field will compete with the truffles. Once the entire process of the mycorrhization has been completed, two internal controls are made to verify our results:. By the term trufficulture we mean the cultivation of truffles by way of seedlings of forest species holm oaks, oaks, etc.

This cultivation is done in suitable zones.


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