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basidioma in Science
Plural basidiomata (bə-sĭd'ē-ō'mə-tə)
A club-shaped, fleshy, spore-producing structure characteristic of many species of basidiomycete fungi. The basidioma grows out of the mass of hyphae known as a mycelium and bears the spore-dispersing structures called basidia. Mushrooms, toadstools, stinkhorns, and puffballs are basidiomata.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for basidioma


in fungi, a large sporophore, or fruiting body, in which sexually produced spores are formed on the surface of club-shaped structures (basidia). Basidiocarps are found among the members of the phylum Basidiomycota (q.v.), with the exception of the rust and smut fungi. The largest basidiocarps include giant puffballs (Calvatia gigantea), which can be 1.6 m (5.25 feet) long, 1.35 m broad, and 24 cm (9.5 inches) high, and those of bracket fungi (Polyporus squamosus)-2 m in diameter. The smallest are single cells of the yeastlike Sporobolomyces.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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