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Summary: Panaeolina foenisecii is distinguished by a bluntly conic to bell-shaped young cap that is hygrophanous chestnut-brown to dark brown or cinnamon-brown, often with a darker marginal band, thin fragile stem, absent veil, growth in grass, and dark brown spore deposit. Panaeolina foenisecii has been separated from Panaeolus because of its brown or purple brown (as opposed to black) spores that are rough. It is common in lawns (perhaps the most common lawn-inhabiting mushroom in the Pacific Northwest according to Trudell(4)). It has been reported specifically for BC (Redhead(5)), and material was examined from WA, OR, ON, CA, IL, MA, MD, MI, MN, MT, NY, PA, TN, WI, Mexico, (Smith).
Cap: 1-3(4)cm across, bluntly conic to bell-shaped, expanding to convex, broadly umbonate, or nearly flat; hygrophanous, chestnut brown to dark brown or cinnamon brown when moist, "fading as it dries to dingy buff or tan, often with a darker marginal band when partially dry"; not viscid, (Arora), 1-3cm across, bell-shaped to convex with margin incurved, expanding to broadly convex or nearly flat; hygrophanous, smoky brown to dull chestnut brown, "fading to sordid tan or light grayish brown, and often having a dark, ringlike band along the margin"; smooth, often cracking in drying, margin occasionally translucent, especially when young, (Stamets), margin striate when moist, no veil remnants, (Menser), ranges from dark smoky brown to pale cinnamon when fresh, (Trudell)
Flesh: thin, fragile, (Arora), thin; "watery brown when moist, pallid when dry", (Stamets)
Gills: adnate to adnexed or seceding, fairly close; brown becoming deep brown, deep grayish brown, or chocolate brown, "the faces often somewhat mottled and the edges paler or whitish", (Arora), adnate, soon seceding, close, moderately broad; pallid when young, becoming dull brownish or deep brown, and becoming slightly mottled, (Stamets), broad and ventricose (Smith)
Stem: 4-8cm x 0.15-0.4cm, equal or with a widened base, fragile; "white to dingy brownish (often becoming brown from the base upward)"; more or less smooth, (Arora), 4-8cm x 0.2-0.35cm, equal, brittle; pallid to whitish, darkening from base up when old or with handling; pruinose, slightly striate and twisted toward apex, (Stamets), hollow, rigid, straight and equal or flattened or twisted-striate, base enlarged; lighter near top when young; covered with soft, short white hairs, apex striate, white mycelium at base, no veil remnants, (Menser)
Veil: absent (Arora)
Odor: fungoid (Smith), pleasant (Miller)
Taste: acidulous (Smith), mild (Miller)
Microscopic spores: spores 12-17 x 6-9 microns, elliptic, rough, (Arora), spores 12-17 x 7-9 microns, roughened; pleurocystidia present in the form of chrysocystidia, but difficult to find and generally not projecting beyond basidia, cheilocystidia 22-30(35) x 7-12 microns, "variable, fusoid-ventricose, sometimes clavate or sublageniform with a long, flexuous neck", (Stamets); spores 12-15 x 6.5-9 microns, ovate in face view, somewhat to obscurely inequilateral in side view, "ornamented with irregular low warts or areolate patches of outer wall material, apex truncate from an apical pore", spores in KOH dingy cocoa, in Melzer's reagent about the same or duller rusty brown, wall about 0.5 microns thick; basidia 4-spored, 24-30 x 8-11 microns, clavate, projecting slightly when sporulating; pleurocystidia none, but possibly scattered pseudocystidia buried in hymenium, cheilocystidia 28-42 x 7-13 microns, fusoid-ventricose with obtuse apex, thin-walled, smooth, colorless, content not distinctive; clamp connections present, (Smith), spores 11-18 x 6-9 microns, almond-shaped, (Trudell)
Spore deposit: deep brown or purple-brown (Arora), dark brown not black (Stamets), dark vinaceous brown (Smith)
Habitat / Range
scattered or in groups on lawns and other grassy places, (Arora), in grassy areas but not directly on dung, commoner in spring than fall, (Stamets), single to gregarious, late spring to fall, mainly fruiting in summer, (Menser)
Panaeolina foenisecii resembles Panaeolus acuminatus, Panaeolus fimicola, and Panaeolus subbalteatus in having a dark band along margin of cap, but Panaeolina foenisecii has a deep brown to purple-brown rather than blackish spore deposit. Panaeolus castaneifolius has slightly thicker ( 0.3-0.6cm) equal stem (without enlarged base), purple-black gills, and purple black spores. Psathyrella species differ by having non-mottled gills and having spores which discolor in concentrated H2SO4.
harmless in small quantities, but potentially poisonous to toddlers in lawns, since some collections contain traces of psilocybin, but western collections apparently inactive, (Arora), not active to weakly active, no psilocybin or psilocin found in a stud
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:
2020-05-29 7:46:36 AM
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