Pine Mushrooms Require Mature Forests
Forests must at least be over 85 years old for the commercially-valuable pine mushrooms to emerge in northwest British Columbia’s Kispiox Valley. This and 11 other ectomycorrhizal mushroom species were only found in mature stands of the Interior Cedar-Hemlock biogeoclimatic zone, moist-cold variant.
Overall, researchers identified 128 ectomycorrhizal species occurring above ground on 12 study sites spanning a full range of forest ages. Pole stands of less than 40 years contained 40 species in abundance, while mid-seral stands acquired 30 additional well-established species. As succession progresses, these forests accumulate, rather than replace, ectomycorrhizal fungi species, particularly 20 to 120 years after establishing.
J.M. Kranabetter, J. Friesen, S. Gamiet and P. Kroeger. 2005. Ectomycorrhizal mushroom distribution by stand age in western hemlock – lodgepole pine forests of northwestern British Columbia. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 35(7): 1527–1539.