Do forest trees really “talk” through an underground fungi network? Not so fast, say researchers. Popular ideas are getting ahead of science.

Fungi Monotropastrum humile A kind of myco-heterotroph.

The notion that forest trees can communicate, share resources, and even safeguard their seedlings through an underground network of delicate fungal filaments has captured the public’s imagination and earned the moniker “wood-wide web.” However, University of Alberta expert Justine Karst warns that the science behind these ideas is yet to be proven.

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