Definitions

smut

smut

[smuht]
smut, name for an order of parasitic fungi (Ustilaginales) and the various diseases of plants caused by them. Smuts produce sootlike masses of spores on the host. The spore masses may break up into a dustlike powder readily scattered by wind (loose smuts) or remain more or less covered by a smooth membrane (covered or kernel smuts). Certain smuts are edible and are considered a delicacy in some countries. As a disease, smuts lower the vitality of the host plant and often cause deformities. There is no alternation of hosts. Smuts are a most serious threat to cereal grain crops. Among those that cause severe annual losses to crops are corn smut, oat smut, bunt or stinking smut, and loose smut of wheat. Bunt is probably the most serious disease that attacks wheat at the young or seedling stage and spoils the grain. It has the odor of sour herring and is caused by either of two smut fungi. The fungus may be present on the wheat seed or in the soil in which the seed is sown, or it may be blown into a field by the wind. Smuts are classified in the kingdom Fungi, phylum (division) Basidiomycota, order Ustilaginales.

Disease of cereals, corn, grasses, onion, and sorghum, caused by many species of fungi (see fungus). Spores accumulate in sootlike masses (sori) that form within blisters in seeds, leaves, stems, flower parts, and bulbs. The sori usually break up into a black powder that is readily dispersed by wind. Many smut fungi enter embryos or seedling plants, develop throughout the plant, and appear externally only as the plants near maturity. Other smuts are localized, infecting actively growing tissues. Control includes growing resistant varieties in noninfested soil, treating seeds with fungicide, using disease-free transplants, and destroying infected plants or plant parts before the spores are released.

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Smut may refer to:

  • Smut (fungus), a group of plant parasitic fungi
  • Smut (comics), an adult British comic title dating back to the 1980s
  • A colloquial term for obscenity
  • A colloquial term for pornography
  • "Smut" (song), satirical song on obscenity by Tom Lehrer
  • SMUT (business) - A vintage variety and vinyl record store in Portland, Oregon that opened in 2003. It is a well known stop for rock bands and other famous personalities while in Portland. The store has been featured on NPR radio and CBS' Sunday Morning Television program. The store is noteworthy for the fact that its owners, now married, met through the sale of a vintage leather jacket at a popular Portland nighttime flea market.

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