Biodiversity and Conservation of Forest Fungi of Central India

  • R. K. VermaEmail author


Biodiversity of the forest fungi of central India (Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, and part of Maharashtra) has been recorded. A total of 838 fungi belonging to 321 genera (199 genera of ascomycetes, 107 basidiomycetes, 10 phycomycetes, and 3 myxomycetes) were recorded on different substrates from the forests. Among them, 529 species belong to ascomycete, 282 to basidiomycete, and 26 to lower fungi and myxomycete. The maximum number of fungi, 347 recorded on leaf, followed by 259 on stem and wood, 121 in soil/on ground, 33 in litter, 19 on roots, 24 on seed/pods/seedlings and 2 on insects, were reported on leaf causing common leaf diseases. Fungi recorded on stem, branches, twigs, culms, etc. are either causing cankers, twig blights, die back, etc. or decay and deterioration of these organs in standing trees as well as fallen parts on the forest floor. Top dying and root rot of teak caused by Phomopsis tectonae and Helicobasidium compactum are the diseases causing serious damage in plantations of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra, respectively. Some fungi, for example species of Amanita, Astraeus, Boletus, Geastrum, Lepiota, Pisolithus, Ramaria, Russula, Scleroderma, Thelephora, etc., produce ectomycorrhizae while species of Coriolopsis, Daedalea, Daldinia, Earliella, Favolus, Flavodon, Funalia, Ganoderma, Hypoxylon, Hymenochaete, Inonotus, Irpex, Junghunia, Lenzites, Microporus, Navisporus, Phellinus, Polyporus, Polystictus, Poria, Pyrofomes, Rigidoporus, Skeletocutis, Stereum, Tremates, Xylaria, etc. are the common wood-decay fungi. Common mushroom collected from the ground and decaying wood and litter are species of Agaricus, Amanita, Agrocybe, Coprinus, Lepiota, Marasmius, Mycena, Pleurotus, Termitomyces, Tricholoma, and Volvariella. Root rot of Dalbergia sissoo and Acacia catechu caused by Ganoderma lucidum is posing a serious threat in central India. Spongipellis spumeus causes root rot in the mature trees of Albizia procera and is also causing considerable damage. Some recently recorded new diseases include vascular wilt of aonla caused by Fusarium solani and root rot of teak seedlings (only occurs under water stress condition) caused by Helicobasidium compactum and Tritirachium roseum. Two new genera and 30 new species were described from central India during the last 5 years. Recently described new species include Asterostomella shoreae, Cheilymenia jabalpurensis, Nitschkia tectonae, and Passalora emblicae. In central India over 2,700 fungi were collected during the last 15 years, out of them 12.3 % fungi were collected only once and are considered as threatened and needs conservation. Only 1.8 % fungi were frequently collected (more than 11 times during this period) including Phomopsis tectonae, whose population is recorded increasing in teak growing areas. The data indicate that the population of major fungi is dwindling with time.


Forest fungi Fungal diversity Conservation of fungi Leaf spot Root rot Soil fungi Twig spot Wood rot 



The authors are thankful to Dr. U. Prakasam, Director, Tropical Forest Research Institute, Jabalpur for providing the research facilities.


  1. Bagchee KD (1959) The fungal diseases of sal (Shorea robusta) V. The heart rot of sal caused by Trametes incerta. Indian Forest Record (NS). Mycology 2:61–69Google Scholar
  2. Bakshi BK (1957) Heart rots in relation to management of sal. Indian Forester 83:651–661Google Scholar
  3. Chakraborty L, Panwar SK, Shukla RV (1991) Effect of closer on soil properties and its fungal population in sal foest. J Trop Forestry 7:51–61Google Scholar
  4. Dadwal VS, Jamaluddin (1991) Unrecorded diseases of Grevillea pteridifolia. J Trop Forestry 7:248–249Google Scholar
  5. Dadwal VS, Verma RK, Jamaluddin (2003) New species of Phomopsis causing phyllode spot and top dying in Acacia mangium. J Mycol Pl Pathol 33:42–44Google Scholar
  6. Harsh NSK, Joshi K (2008) Mushrooms: the vegetable of the future. India Sci Technol.
  7. Harsh NSK, Tiwari CK, Jamaluddin (1989) Prospects of wild edible fungi as minor forest product in Madhya Pradesh. Paper presented in the National Seminar on Minor Forest Produce and Tribal development held on 19–20 Oct. 1989 at IDF, JabalpurGoogle Scholar
  8. Harsh NSK, Rai BK, Ayachi SS (1993) Forest fungi and tribal economy—a case study in Baiga tribes of MP. J Trop Forestry 9:94–96Google Scholar
  9. Harsh NSK, Rai BK, Tiwari DP (1993) Use of Ganoderma lucidum in folk medicine. Indian J Trop Biodiv 1(3-4):324–326Google Scholar
  10. Harsh NSK, Soni KK, Tiwari CK, Verma RK, Jamaluddin (2000) Decline of sandal trees in Seoni district of Madhya Pradesh. J Trop Forestry 16(4):85–91Google Scholar
  11. Jamaluddin (1991) Status of Polyporus shoreae causing root-rot in dry and wet sal forest. J Trop Forestry 7(4):342–344Google Scholar
  12. Jamaluddin, Chandra KK (1997) Distribution of VAM fungi in bauxite mine over burden plantation of Amarkantak (M.P). Indian Forester 125(5):412–418Google Scholar
  13. Jamaluddin, Dadwal VS (2001) Studies on charcoal root rot of Acacia auriculiformis. Indian J Trop Biodiv 9(1-4):61–65Google Scholar
  14. Jamaluddin, Dadwal VS, Soni KK (1982) Studies on charcoal root rot of Pinus caribaea. Indian Forester 108(9):618–622Google Scholar
  15. Jamaluddin, Dadwal VS, Soni KK (1984a) An observation on the incidence of charcoal root rot disease of Pinus caribaea plantation of Bastar (MP). Indian Forester 110(6):552–557Google Scholar
  16. Jamaluddin, Dadwal VS, Soni KK (1984b) Two new Ascomycetes from India. Biol Bull India 6(3):323–326Google Scholar
  17. Jamaluddin, Dadwal VS, Soni KK (1986) The status of diseases and their management in forests of Madhya Pradesh. Research Report, Regional Forest Research Centre, JabalpurGoogle Scholar
  18. Jamaluddin, Dadwal VS, Soni KK (1990) Susceptibility of different provenances of Pinus roxburgii to Cercospora needleblight at Amarkantak (M.P). Indian Forester 116:58–61Google Scholar
  19. Jamaluddin, Nath V, Namdeo RK (1993) Studied on diseases of some important medicinal plants. J Trop Forestry 9:270–279Google Scholar
  20. Kamal VRK, Morgan-Jones G (1986) Notes on hyphomycetes L1. Kameshwaromyces a new foliicolous sooty mold like genus from Madhya Pradesh, India. Mycotaxon 25:247–250Google Scholar
  21. Khera PD (1991) The Baigas and the sal forest. Indian J MFP 1:72–80Google Scholar
  22. Manoharachary C, Sridhar K, Singh R, Adholeya A, Suryanarayanan TS, Rawat S, Johri BN (2005) Fungal biodiversity: distribution, conservation and prospecting of fungi from India. Curr Sci 89(1):58–71Google Scholar
  23. Morgan-Jones G, Kamal, Verma RK (1986) Goosiella, a new pteridicolous helicosporous genus from Madhya Pradesh, India. Mycologia 78:496–500CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Nayak S, Satya, Upreti DK (2007) Lichen diversity in Achanakmar wild life sanctuary, core zone area of proposed Achanakmar biosphere reserve, Chhattisgarh. J Econ Taxon Bot 31:133–142Google Scholar
  25. Pyasi A, Soni KK, Verma RK (2011) Dominant occurrence of ectomycorrhizal colonizer Astraeus hygrometricus of sal (Shorea robusta) in forest of Jharsuguda Orissa. J Mycol Pl Pathol 41:222–225Google Scholar
  26. Pyasi A, Soni KK, Verma RK (2012) A new record of Boletus fallax from India. J Mycol Pl Pathol 42(1):172–173Google Scholar
  27. Rajak RC, Soni KK (1978) Chaetopatella indica sp. nov, a new generic record for India. Curr Sci 47(4):136Google Scholar
  28. Rajak RC, Soni KK (1981) Follicolous ectoparasites from Jabalpur-1—some sarcinellae. Indian J Mycol Pl Pathol 2(1):89–91Google Scholar
  29. Rajak RC, Soni KK, Pathak GP (1978) Two new species of hyphomycetes. Curr Sci 47:397–398Google Scholar
  30. Sharma N, Soni KK, Jamaluddin, Verma RK (2005) A new species of Corynespora from central India. Indian Phytopath 58:503–504Google Scholar
  31. Sharma N, Soni KK, Verma RK (2006a) Some new hyphomycetes from forests of Satpura. Indian J Trop Biodiv 14(1):34–40Google Scholar
  32. Sharma N, Soni KK, Jamaluddin, Verma RK (2006b) A new species of Mystrosporiella causing leaf spots in Terminalia bellerica. Indian Phytopath 59(2):257–260Google Scholar
  33. Shettyi PK (1957) Soil fungal flora of two forest compartments of Amarkantak, M.P. Bull Biol Soc Univ Saugar 9:40–47Google Scholar
  34. Soni KK, Verma RK (2010) A new vascular wilt disease of aonla (Emblica officinalis) and its management. J Mycol Pl Pathol 40(2):187–191Google Scholar
  35. Soni KK, Dadwal VS, Jamaluddin (1984) A new species of Cercosporidium from India. Curr Sci 53(16):877–878Google Scholar
  36. Soni KK, Dadwal VS, Jamaluddin (1985) Charcoal root rot and stem rot of Eucalyptus. Euro J Forest Pathol 15:397–401CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Soni KK, Tiwari CK, Verma RK (2010) Heart rot in Indian hard wood tree species. J Trop Forestry 26(2):15–21Google Scholar
  38. Soni KK, Pyasi A, Verma RK (2011a) A new record of Helicosporium phragmitis from India. J Mycol Pl Pathol 41:330–331Google Scholar
  39. Soni KK, Pyasi A, Verma RK (2011b) Litter decomposing fungi in sal (Shorea robusta) forests of central India. Nusantara Bioscience 3:136–144Google Scholar
  40. Tiwari DP, Rajak RC, Nikhra KM (1981) A new species of Phomopsis causing leaf-spot disease on Tectona grandis L. Curr Sci 50(22):1002–1003Google Scholar
  41. Tiwari CK, Verma RK, Ayachi A, Asaiya AJK (2008) Wood decaying fungi of sal from Madhya Pradesh, India. Sci-fronts 2:13–26Google Scholar
  42. Tiwari CK, Parihar J, Verma RK (2009) Wood decaying fungi on stored wood of Pterocarpus marsupium from Chhattisgarh, India. Sci-fronts 3(3):109–121Google Scholar
  43. Tiwari CK, Parihar J, Verma RK (2010a) Additions to wood decaying fungi of India. JoTT 2(6):970–973Google Scholar
  44. Tiwari CK, Parihar J, Verma RK (2010b) Occurrence and distribution of wood decaying fungi in forest wood depots of Chhattisgarh. Indian Forester 136(4):476–486Google Scholar
  45. Tiwari CK, Parihar J, Verma RK (2012) A new and rare species of Phlyctaeniella from Central India. Mycosphere 3(4):450–453. doi 10.5943/mycosphere/3/4/8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Upreti DK, Nayaka S, Satya (2005) Enumeration of lichens from Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, India. J Appl Biosci 31(1):55–63Google Scholar
  47. Upreti DK, Satya, Joshi Y (2007) Lichenological studies in Achanakmar-Amarkantak Biosphere Reserve. Workshop on Research Needs for Amarkantak-Achamakmar biosphere reserve, 30th Aug. 2007, TFRI, JabalpurGoogle Scholar
  48. Upreti DK, Nayaka S, Joshi Y (2009) Ramboldia amarkantakana (Lecanoraceae, Ascomycota), a new lichen species from India. Mycotaxon 107:239–242CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Verma RK (2009) Diversity of AM fungi in forests of central India. Indian J Trop Biodiv 17(1):37–46Google Scholar
  50. Verma RK (2010) Nitschkia tectonae-a new ascomycete on teak from central India. Indian Phytopath 63:430–432Google Scholar
  51. Verma RK, Soni KK (2007) Fungi of Achanakmar-Amarkantak biosphere reserve and Chilpi Ghati. Indian J Trop Biodiv 15:116–126Google Scholar
  52. Verma RK, Soni KK (2008) Development of arbuscular mycorrhizae and leaf blight disease in young plantation of 25 species of bamboos. Indian Forester 134(9):1236–1244Google Scholar
  53. Verma RK, Soni KK, Tiwari CK, Jamaluddin (2001) Two new ascomycetes from India. Kavaka 28-29:19–25Google Scholar
  54. Verma RK, Sharma N, Soni KK, Jamaluddin (2008) Forest fungi of Central India. International Book Distributing Co., LucknowGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer India 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Forest Pathology Division, Tropical Forest Research InstitutePO-RFRCJabalpurIndia

Personalised recommendations