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Entry Category: Mycology - Starting with L


aka: Reindeer Moss
aka: Iceland Moss
A lichen is a composite organism that is the result of a simple photosynthesizing organism (green algae or cyanobacteria/blue-green algae) living among filaments (hyphae) of multiple fungi species in a mutually beneficial symbiotic relationship. Although lichens had been recognized as organisms for many years, it was not until 1867, when Swiss botanist Simon Schwendener (1829‒1919) proposed his dual theory of lichens, that the true nature of the lichen association began to emerge. The green algae or cyanobacteria benefit by being protected from the environment by the filaments of the fungi, which also gather moisture and nutrients from the environment, and (usually) provide an anchor to it, whereas the fungi benefit from the carbohydrates produced by the green algae or cyanobacteria …