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Chemical study of the incipient decay of red alder, Alnus rubra, Bong. Cserjesi, Antal Janos


The chemical properties of the wood of red alder (Alnus rubra Bong.) were examined after exposure to decay by three organisms, Fomes pinicola (Schwartz ex Fries) Cooke, as a brown rotting fungus, Polyporus versicolor L. ex Fries and Stereum hirsutum Fr. as white rotting fungi. Cold- and hot-water solubility were most affected by all three test fungi. The increase in methanol-benzene solubility and in one-percent sodium hydroxide solubility were the highest in samples decayed by F. pinicola, but the changes were less pronounced than observed for the water solubles. Destruction of cellulose and lignin appeared in samples decayed by P. versicolor. The deterioration of cellulose and lignin by the other two fungi was within the limit of experimental error of the determination methods used.

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