from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • An extensive order of zygomycetous fungi, the smuts, parasitic in the tissues of living plants, especially flowering plants, causing much damage, particularly to the grasses. The mycelium is widely spreading, but soon vanishes. The teleutospores are produced in the interior of mycelial branches, which often become gelatinized. The life-history begins with the production from the resting-spore of a promycelium which bears sporidlike gametes. These gametes conjugate in pairs, and directly, or by means of sporids, produce a new mycelium, which in turn bears the resting-spores in another host. Ustilago, Urocystis, and Tilletia are the most important genera. See Coniomycetes, smut, 3, Fungi.


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