A common question we are asked when helping people establish truffle orchards is whether truffle trees can survive periods of heavy rain and episodes of flooding, with the main concern being, that alongside damage to the tree roots, prolonged exposure to water will inhibit or even destroy the truffle mycorrhiza. Indeed, when we are assessing the suitability of sites to grow truffles in the UK, soil drainage is one of the most important considerations for whether the location is a suitable site for a truffle plantation. Our advice is to avoid areas prone to becoming waterlogged and to always plant in areas that are free draining. Soil drainage is linked to many important variables, such as soil texture, how different tree species grow, development of truffle mycorrhiza and truffle production quantity and quality. However, we have been undertaking research into how water immersion specifically affects tree ectomycorrhiza for several years and now some of Professor Paul Thomas’s (Our MD and Scientific Manager) preliminary findings have been published. 

May 20, 2021

Can truffle trees survive flooding and heavy rain?

A common question we are asked when helping people establish truffle orchards is whether truffle trees can survive periods of heavy rain and episodes of flooding, with the main concern being, that alongside damage to the tree roots, prolonged exposure to water will inhibit or even destroy the truffle mycorrhiza. Indeed, when we are assessing the suitability of sites to grow truffles in the UK, soil drainage is one of the most important considerations for whether the location is a suitable site for a truffle plantation. Our advice is to avoid areas prone to becoming waterlogged and to always plant in areas that are free draining. Soil drainage is linked to many important variables, such as soil texture, how different tree species grow, development of truffle mycorrhiza and truffle production quantity and quality. However, we have been undertaking research into how water immersion specifically affects tree ectomycorrhiza for several years and now some of Professor Paul Thomas’s (Our MD and Scientific Manager) preliminary findings have been published.
February 19, 2021

MSL Blog: Can we grow white truffles, Tuber magnatum? – Feb 2021

How can I grow white truffles or Tuber magnatum? Can I farm white truffles? Can I grow white truffles in the UK? These are some of the most common questions we’ve been asked over the years and the response has always been that the technology just isn't there yet. Many years ago, we developed a system that resulted in well colonised trees with T. magnatum, but we had never offered these for sale as there are still so many unknowns about its cultivation. Consequently, there was widespread excitement this week when it was reported by a French team that white truffles had been produced from inoculated trees and in just 4.5 years! We thought it would be useful to provide a brief synopsis of this report and the current state of the technology to help would-be cultivators.
February 16, 2021

MSL Blog: truffles and sex: an update on what we know and implications for truffle production – Feb 2021

Within truffe cultivation, some basic parameters are understood. For example, it is widely accepted that to cultivate black winter ‘Périgord’ truffles (Tuber melanosporum) we need a suitable climate, alkaline soils and host trees whose roots have formed mycorrhizal structures with T. melanosporum. Across the globe, these basic principles form the basis of truffle cultivation and an approach that is broadly successful. However, the very basic question of how a truffle forms and what triggers this development is still poorly understood. One of the most basic questions can be summarised in one word that has occupied humans for millennia: sex! In this blog post Prof. Paul Thomas discusses how DNA sequencing technology has led to the discovery that for the winter truffle there are two mating types (or ‘sexes’) and these must come together to form fruiting bodies (truffles).
November 5, 2018

New Grower Seminars – Scotland – November 28th 2018

Are you based in Scotland and interested in learning more about truffle cultivation on your land? Dr Thomas will be delivering a seminar in Angus aimed at farmers and landowners who are considering diversification. The seminar will be held during the evening of Wednesday 28th November in Alyth, Angus and for more information please send an enquiry through our contact page.
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