The fungi kingdom
Fungi are unique and important organisms which belong to their own kingdom, completely separate from plants and animals.Fungi are not plants – they have no leaves or flowers, no cellulose or chlorophyll. Instead they comprise microscopic, thread-like structures termed ‘hyphae’, through which they absorb nutrients. They are a hugely diverse group of great economic importance, yet they remain vastly under-studied compared to plants. It is estimated that there may be as many as 1.5 million species of fungi in the world – more than six times the number of flowering plants. Yet only about 100,000 species have so far been described.