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

Hygrophorus saxatilis A.H. Sm. & Hesler
Rockies waxy-cap

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

Introduction to the Macrofungi

© Michael Beug  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #18461)

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Distribution of Hygrophorus saxatilis
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Species Information

features include slightly viscid cap that is whitish to pale buff or pale pinkish cinnamon, short-decurrent gills that are bright pinkish cinnamon, and dry stem that is white or cap-colored, becoming gill-colored when old; Hesler(1) examined collections from WA, OR, ID, and reported by Schalkwijk-Barendsen from BC
3-8(10)cm across, "obtuse with an inrolled margin when young", becoming flat or with low umbo and decurved [downcurved] margin; whitish to very pale buff or with a developing cinnamon tinge ("pale pinkish buff" to "light pinkish cinnamon"), occasionally with "pinkish cinnamon" spots or zones; slightly viscid but soon becoming moist or dry, bald or when dry appearing fibrillose under hand lens, margin finely pubescent [downy], (Hesler), up to 9cm across, convex, a bit irregular, with inrolled margin; "shiny white and yellow with pink appressed hair", pinkish watery spots near margin, (Schalkwijk-Barendsen)
thick, soft; "pinkish buff" to "light pinkish cinnamon" and watery-punctate; in stem colored as cap surface, unchanging, (Hesler), white (Schalkwijk-Barendsen)
short decurrent, subdistant (30-36 reaching stem), 1 or 2 tiers of subgills, gills 3-6cm broad and tapered both ways, soft, fragile, rather thick; "light ochraceous salmon" to "light pinkish cinnamon" (more or less pinkish cinnamon-tan) and very beautiful, evenly colored, bright when young and becoming duller when old [gills also referred to as bright pinkish cinnamon]; "frequently more or less wrinkled or crisped", edges even, (Hesler), decurrent and arched, separating from stem; pale at first then rosy red, (Schalkwijk-Barendsen)
6-8(12)cm x 1-1.5(2)cm at top, equal or narrowing slightly downward, solid; white or same color as cap, becoming the same color as gills when old; dry, thinly appressed-fibrillose to fibrillose-pruinose top, often appearing more or less longitudinally striate, becoming bald when old, (Hesler), up to 17cm tall, tall and irregular, widened at top and/or base up to 2cm thick, shiny white, staining yellow; a bit pruinose at top, (Schalkwijk-Barendsen)
partial veil absent (Hesler)
none or faintly of dried peaches (Hesler), none or faintly of dried apricots (Schalkwijk-Barendsen)
mild (Hesler)
Microscopic spores:
spores 7-9.5 x 4-5(6) microns, subelliptic [nearly elliptic], smooth, inamyloid; basidia 2-spored and 4-spored, 46-60(70) x 6-9 microns; pleurocystidia and cheilocystidia absent; gill tissue divergent; clamp connections present on the hyphae of the cap cuticle, gill trama and subhymenium
Spore deposit:
white (Schalkwijk-Barendsen), white, although spore prints on the top of neighboring caps can be dark ochraceous salmon, darker than the cap color, (Hesler)

Habitat / Range

scattered "under conifers on steep hillsides or very rocky dry soil", August to October, (Hesler), in cespitose bundles on decaying conifer stump, (Schalkwijk-Barendsen), summer, fall

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Range and Status Information Links


Additional Photo Sources

Related Databases

Species References

Hesler(1)* (colors in double quotation marks from Ridgway(1)), Schalkwijk-Barendsen(1)*

References for the fungi

General References