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Feasibility of using red pigment producing fungi to stain wood for decorative applications

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This research investigated the use of red pigment producing fungi in controlled inoculation into woody substrates for decorative applications. Two Fusarium species isolated from red-stained wood and two strains of Arthrographis cuboidea capable of producing red stain in culture were inoculated onto sugar maple (Acer saccharum Marsh.), incubated for 6–14¬†weeks, and evaluated for their ability to produce a high-saturation, penetrating stain. Both Fusarium species failed to produce significant pigmentation either externally or internally. Both strains of A. cuboidea produced high amounts of surface and penetrating red stain within a moderate incubation period (over 80% of the wood samples stained by 10 weeks of incubation) but were capable of doing so only under sterile or semisterile conditions. Production of red stain did not differ between A. cuboidea isolates except at 6 and 8 weeks where isolate ELS-1 had significantly higher internal red stain. It was also found that an increase in incubation time for A. cuboidea past 8 weeks led to increasing amounts of blue pigment on external wood surfaces. The findings indicate that A. cuboidea is suitable for production of red pigmentation on decorative wood applications only if utilized under sterile or semisterile conditions and incubation is halted before blue pigment begins to form.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: August 28, 2011

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  • Published since 1971, this monthly journal features articles, reviews, notes and commentaries on all aspects of forest science, including biometrics and mensuration, conservation, disturbance, ecology, economics, entomology, fire, genetics, management, operations, pathology, physiology, policy, remote sensing, social science, soil, silviculture, wildlife and wood science, contributed by internationally respected scientists. It also publishes special issues dedicated to a topic of current interest.
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