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     (Photo ID #18461)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Hygrophorus saxatilis
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Species Information

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 and Range

Hygrophorus melizeus forma minor is more highly colored (the cap a dull creamy white), has creamy yellowish gills without a salmon tint, has mild odor, and lacks a true gelatinous pellicle, (Hesler)
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