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Summary: Features include small size, hygrophanous striate cap that is pale yellow to pale fulvous or tawny, pale yellow young gills, stem that is pallid to pale yellow becoming slightly more fulvous, with upper part pruinose, pale cinnamon brown spore deposit, large elliptic to oval spores, and ventricose-capitate cystidia of variable size. Galerina heterocystis is found at least in WA, AK, AL, CA, MI, TN, WY, Jamaica, Argentina, Norway, United Kingdom, Altai Mts. in Asia, and Japan, (Smith). It is also found in OR (Castellano). There are collections from BC at the University of British Columbia.
Cap: 0.2-1.5(2.5)cm across, bluntly conical, usually expanding to bell-shaped or convex, may have small umbo or papilla; hygrophanous, pale yellow to pale fulvous, fading on drying to pale buff; moist, bald, (Smith), pale yellow to pale cinnamon to tawny, when dry more or less buff, (Arora), shiny or matte, very striate margin, (Courtecuisse)
Flesh: thin, fragile, (Smith)
Gills: adnate ascending to somewhat adnexed, close to distant, mostly subdistant, narrow to broad 0.3cm); pale yellow becoming pale fulvous from spores; edges even, (Smith)
Stem: 1.2-8cm x 0.05-0.3cm, equal, tubular, fragile; pallid to pale yellow becoming slightly more fulvous, but not characteristically darkening from base up; upper part pruinose, lower part may have faint whitish fibrils, (Smith)
Veil: absent or rudimentary (Smith), faint off-white fragments from fleeting veil near base, "or these may be lacking in some, veil fragments usually visible only when young, and some specimens may not show signs of having a veil", (Castellano)
Odor: none (Smith)
Taste: mild (Smith)
Microscopic spores: spores 11-17 x 6.5-8.5 microns, somewhat inequilateral in side view (4-spored), often more oblong in 2-spored forms, "nearly smooth to distinctly verruculose" [with fine warts] including suprahilar area, pale cinnamon in KOH; basidia 4-spored or various mixtures of 1 to 4-spored, (18)24-35(43) x (7)8-10(12) microns; pileocystidia none or close to edge and resembling cheilocystidia, cheilocystidia variable in size, 30-44 x 6-9 microns in type, 18-26 x 6-9 microns in some, 30-60 x 7-12 microns in others, capitellum 5-7 microns in diameter, more or less Conocybe-like, [more or less ventricose-capitate (wider in middle with a head)], rarely subfusoid or forked and bicapitate; pileocystidia none or rare near margin; caulocystidia 30-70 x 7-25 microns, "cylindric, ampullaceous or ventricose-capitate", numerous over upper half of stem; clamp connections absent, (Smith), spores 11-17 x 6.5-8.5 microns, more or less elliptic, roughened to nearly smooth, (Arora), cheilocystidia bottle-shaped (Castellano)
Spore deposit: pale cinnamon-brown (Arora)
Habitat / Range
gregarious on moss (only rarely on sphagnum), (Smith), scattered to gregarious in damp, mossy or grassy places, usually in or near woods, (Arora), "Single to gregarious, attached to the base of the mosses and lower dead stems and roots; also in the soils close by Ranunculus spp. Various grasses mixed with mosses seem to be its preferred neighbors"; summer and fall, (Castellano, with Ranunculus in italics)
Galerina dimorphocystis is somewhat similar in general appearance but has a pubescent cap (Castellano). Galerina vexans is somewhat similar and also grows on moss (Pacific Northwest status not clear from monograph) but differs microscopically, (Smith).
Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2020. E-Flora BC:
Electronic Atlas of the Plants of British Columbia [eflora.bc.ca]. Lab for
Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British
Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed:
2020-06-03 10:27:30 AM
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