Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A dense mass of branched hyphae, as in certain fungi, that contain stored food and are capable of remaining dormant for long periods.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A compact mass of hardened mycelium stored with reserve food material that, in some higher fungi such as ergot, becomes detached and remains dormant until a favourable opportunity for growth occurs.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A hardened body formed by certain fungi, as by the Claviceps purpurea, which produces ergot.
  • n. The mature or resting stage of a plasmodium.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In botany:
  • n. A pluricellular tuber-like reservoir of reserve material forming on a primary filamentous mycelium, from which it becomes detached when its development is complete.
  • n. [capitalized] An old genus of fungi, comprising hard, black, compact bodies which are now known to be a resting-stage of the mycelium of certain other fungi, such as Peziza tuberosa. See ergot, 2.
  • n. In zoology, one of the peculiar quiescent cysts or hypnocysts of Mycetozoa, not giving rise to spores.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. compact usually dark-colored mass of hardened mycelium constituting a vegetative food-storage body in various true fungi; detaches when mature and can give rise to new growth
  • n. form genus of sterile imperfect fungi; many form sclerotia; some cause sclerotium disease in plants

Etymologies

New Latin, from Greek sklērotēs, hardness, from sklēros, hard.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • When slime molds experience very harsh conditions such as extremely cold or dry weather, they may harden into a sclerotium that can live for several years and then return to a plasmodium when conditions are favorable

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  • White mold is caused by the fungi sclerotium rolfsii.

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  • Induction of sclerotium formation by acid staling compounds in Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and Sclerotium rolfsii

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  • Nitrogen fertilization of sugarbeet in relation to sclerotium root rot caused by Sclerotium rolfsii Sacc

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  • The effects of light and tyrosinase during sclerotium development in Sclerotium rolfsii Sacc

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