E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Lycoperdon umbrinum Pers.
no common name
Agaricaceae

Species account author: Ian Gibson.
Extracted from Matchmaker: Mushrooms of the Pacific Northwest.

Introduction to the Macrofungi

© Michael Beug  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #17371)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Lycoperdon umbrinum
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Species Information

Summary:
features include white to yellowish or brownish pear-shaped fruitbody that is often grooved or pleated in lower part, the outer layer with scurfy or granular coating mixed with very slender short dark brown spines that are relatively persistent or finally breaking up into concentric zones on base or areolate patches [cracked like dried mud] over the top, inner layer yellowish to dull brown when old, smooth (not reticulate), with pore at top, spore mass cottony, olive-yellow to yellow-brown or olive-brown, confined to upper third of interior, the lower part a sterile base that is white to violaceous-medium gray, small rhizomorphs, and growth under conifers or occasionally on wood; reported from WA, OR, MT, (Ramsey), New York Botanical Garden herbarium has collections from WA (collected by J.M. Grant), OR (det. by C.T. Rogerson and looked at by V. Demoulin), ID (determined by V. Demoulin), ON, PQ, CA, CO, CT, LA, MA, ME, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, TN, TX (NYBG), University of British Columbia has S. Redhead collections from BC and AB; reported from AB (Schalkwijk-Barendsen), also found in Europe (including Switzerland) and Asia (Breitenbach)
Outer Surface:
3-6(8)cm across, spherical, depressed and tuberous or pear-shaped, with somewhat stem-like base; outer layer "with short, dark brown spines which often lean together at the tips to form pyramids, surface between them smooth to finely verrucose and brown",
Inner layer:
endoperidium whitish to yellowish and translucent, entire endoperidium smooth and ocher-yellow after the spines fall off; forming a pore at the top, (Breitenbach), spore sac yellowish to dull brown when old; smooth; with apical pore, (Ramsey), opens at th
Spore Mass:
olive-yellow to yellow-brown and usually with a distinct columella, (Breitenbach), "medium brown to deep brown", "showing evidence of pseudocolumella", "cottony, confined to upper third of interior", (Ramsey)
Stem:
base often constricted and folded and embedded in the ground; sterile base white inside, large-chambered, (Breitenbach), base 1-4cm across; sterile base "occupying entire tapered base and extending up sides to widest part", "fusing into fertile tissue without demarcation", violaceous medium gray, lacunae [cavities] open, irregular, less than 0.1cm; rhizomorphs present but small, (Ramsey)
Odor:
mild to slightly unpleasant (Miller)
Taste:
mild (Miller)
Microscopic:
spores 4.5-5.5 x 4.5-5.5 microns, round, with distinct fine warts, yellow, with short pedicel, without broken pedicels lying free; basidia 2-spored, 10-15 x 4.5-7 microns, short-clavate, without basal clamp connection; capillitial threads 2.5-6 microns wide, brownish, in parts knotty-sinuous, +/- thick-walled, with numerous pores, (Breitenbach), spores 4-5(5.5) x 4-5(5.5) microns in diameter including spines, round with a small pedicel, minutely spiny at a magnification of 950x with some appearing smooth, almost colored as capillitium; capillitium 3.5-5(6.5) microns wide, yellow-brown with walls up to 0.8(1.6) microns thick, "pitted, branched, occasionally septate, irregular thickenings along the edge, tapering, sinuous in the thinner portions", (Bowerman)
Spore Deposit:
yellow-brown (Breitenbach)

Habitat / Range

single to gregarious or subcespitose [somewhat tufted] on leaf mold under conifers, occasionally on wood, September to November, (Ramsey), mainly in dry parts of hardwood or coniferous woods (Lincoff(1)), usually gregarious, in montane spruce forests on soil among needle litter, grasses, and herbs, as well as on burned ground, commonly in clearcuts; summer to fall, (Breitenbach)

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Range and Status Information Links

Edibility

fairly mediocre (Lincoff(1))

Additional Photo Sources

Related Databases

Species References

Breitenbach(2)*, Ramsey(1), Miller(14)*, Lincoff(1)*, Bowerman(1), Schalkwijk-Barendsen(1)*, NYBG(1) (accessed Sep. 24, 2004), Buczacki(1)*

References for the fungi

General References