The city of Porto is the only one in Portugal that integrates a project called UrbanMycoServe, an initiative that develops new strategies for the conservation of urban trees in several European cities, through the use of wild mushrooms. So, the city is represented by the Escola Superior de Biotecnologia da Universidade Católica Portuguesa, whose researchers have been following this type of solutions for two years.
According to Câmara Municipal do Porto, the starting point was to conduct a "research on the ectomycorrhizal communities associated with the silver linden (tilia tomentosa)", and it was found that "the trees in the boiler had a greater diversity of microorganisms and that the native action of these microscopic beings helps the tree to mitigate the stress effects caused by the most common planting system in the urban environment". In conducting this research, the researchers used several technologies, such as biometric sensors that they installed on trees in different locations in the city.
Subsequently, the researchers decided to use, in some plants, an inoculation technique that aimed to introduce fungi with beneficial properties for the trees. They concluded that the trees that were the target of this treatment grew faster, mainly, the more debilitated, presenting a healthier aspect.
Researchers at the Universidade Católica had the green light from UrbanMycoServe, so they will continue to study the application of wild mushrooms in green areas, as well as their application in other plant species.
Hidurbe applauds this initiative, which is also taking place in the cities of Leuven (Belgium) and Strasbourg (France), which enhances and enriches the importance that green areas assume in cities. Congratulations @camaramunicipaldoporto!
Read more about this project here!