Barry Meyers-Rice (barry@as.arizona.edu)
Fri, 18 Feb 94 15:02:00 MST

>Though, like all fungal diseases, cures take awhile, Sporotrichosis is
>really quite rare. I've worked with commercial dried sphagnum for more
>than 20 years, been in sphagnum bogs at least a dozen times a year for


You're quite right that Sporotrichosis is rare. Of all the CPers I know,
only two have contracted it, and one of these was never verified. A quick
look at my files indicates about 40 trading partners, and these have
been growing plants for, probably, a cumulative sum of a few centuries.
So, we're talking about a rare disease. Still, conversations with them
have gotten me edgy.

Does boiling water really wet moss more easily? Or do you do it to kill
seeds and/or spores?

>than 20 years, been in sphagnum bogs at least a dozen times a year for
>the past 10 years... and so far, so good! :-) (and I'm one of those
>lucky souls who seem to catch anything and everything!)

Two comments on this. The first is that I envy your experiences! The
second is that I recall one paper which said that while the fungus
was found in moss stored at various nurseries, it had not been found
at the bogs. Maybe it's been found since then. But to my understanding,
the fungus is spread at nurseries and other storage places.

Incidentally, oh gentle CPers out there in net-land, don't mistake the
fungus that develops in recently wetted _Sphagnum_ for the kind that can
induce Sporotrichosis.

Oh, and I think Matt was asking about getting spores of _Sphagnum_. Matt,
_Sphagnum_ very rarely if ever produces spores. It is almost always
asexual. A nice book on _Sphagnum_ etc. is by a guy named, I think,
Crum. A book called something like ``Peat and peat-mosses.'' Although it
is biased towards the great-lakes areas of the US.