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2002 Report: Lichens & Fungi

by Don Smith

This appears to have been a good year for fungi.  I say ‘appears’ since I have not had confirmation or otherwise from any expert in this field. Neither must you make the mistake of thinking that I am a Fungi expert.

However, I have come across species that I have not seen before. Your secretary showed me a huge puffball growing among some trees by his house.  puffball.jpg This was the Giant Puffball, Calvatia gigantea. It has been known to grow to 30" across but this one was relatively small at about 8" to 9" across. In January this year, a builder brought the largest specimen he had found among a number growing below the floorboards in a house in Wombleton. It measured 11 inches across.

Many garden plants and weeds have been attacked by yellow or orange Rusts, usually Puccinia species and some by the white powdery mildews.

My fruit trees have suffered too with both eating apples and plums attacked by brown rot while still on the tree. The fruit develops numerous pinkish/brown blobs bursting through the skin due to Sclerotinia fructigena. Bramley Seedling cooking apples seem to be quite resistant to this particular fungus.

Around early August, a crop of Conical Waxcap toadstools Hygrocybe conica, appeared on the lawn, the first time that I had ever seen them. They stand about 2.5” high with a pointy orange/red cap like a witch’s hat and with lemon-yellow streaks on the stem. They eventually blacken and the cap flattens until it curls upwards and the edges split. By a remarkable coincidence, there was an article in the YNU Bulletin on the table at the AGM on fungi recording in which Hygrocybe toadstools are specifically mentioned. It seems that they are important indicators along with other plants and animals, of original, unimproved grassland. In other words, they are one of a range of  bio-organisms indicating areas suitable for conservation.

ClavulinopsisThen a month later, at first mistaking them for yellowing blades of grass, which happens at this time of the year, I found some bright, sulphur-yellow spikes just over 2ins high, in groups sticking out of the grass. This turned out to be Clavulinopsis helvola which Colin Stephenson kindly confirmed for me.  A very similar species has the English name of Golden Spindles which I thought was very appropriate.

North Moor Fungus Foray

On the 15th October last, the Society visited North Moor in the company of Colin Stephenson. His report is as follows:

Slime moulds  
Tubifera ferruginosa on conifer stump
Erysiphe cichoracearum on C.nigra
Erysiphe galeopsidis on S.sylvatica
Erysiphe heraclei on H.sphodylium
Hypoxylon fragiforme on felled Fagus
Hypoxylon multiforme on Betula
Microsphaera alphitoides on Quercus saplings
Microsphaera trifollii on T.dubium
Sawadaea bicornis on Acer leaves
Sphaerotheca epilobii on E.montanum
Sphaerotheca fusca on L.communis
Xylaria carpophylla on Fagus mast
Xylaria hypoxylon on Fagus stump
Xylaria polymorpha on Fagus stump
Helvella crispa  
Rytisma acerinum (Tar spot) on Acer leaves
Cymadothea trifolii on T.repens
Protomyces macrosporus on Aegopodium
Venturia maculiformis on E.angustifolium
Hymenomycetes (Mushrooms & Toadstools)  
Amanita citrina (False Death Cap) Cortinarius annomalus
Amanita citrina v.alba Cystoderma amianthinum
Amanita muscaria (Fly Agaric) Entoloma conferendum
Amanita rubescens (Blusher) Gymnopilus penetrans
Armillaria bulbosa Hygrocybe virginea
Boletus subtomentosus Laccaria laccata (Deceiver)
Chalciporus piperatus Laccaria proxima
Clitocybe nebularis (Clouded Agaric) Lactarius blennius (Slimy Milk-cap)
Collybia butyracea (Butter Cap) Lactarius fluens
Collybia confluens (Clustered Tough-shank) Lactarius tabidus
Collybia maculata (Spotted Tough-shank) Lactarius torminosus (Woolly Milk-cap)
Collybia peronata (Wood Woolly-foot) Lactarius turpis (Ugly Milk-cap)
Coprinus comatus (Shaggy Ink Cap) Leccinum scabrum (Brown Birch Bolete)
Leccinum variicolor Russula betularum
Lentinellus cocleatus Russula fellea (Geranium-scented Russula)
Lyophyllum conatum Russula mairei (Beechwood Sickener)
Lyophyllum decastes (Fried Chicken Mushroom) Russula nigrescens
Marasmius androsaceus (Horsehair Toadstool) Russula ochroleuca(Common Yellow Russula)
Mycena galericulata (Grey Bonnet) Russula puelaris
Mycena pura (Clean Mycena) Russula vesca (Bare-toothed Russula)
Paxillus involutus (Brown Roll-rim) Suillus grevillei (Larch Bolete)
Pluteus podospileus Tricholomopsis rutilans (Purple Blewitt)
Aphyllophorale Type Fungi (Brackets)  
Heterobasidion annosus (Root Fomes) Skeletocutis nivea
Postia caesia Stereum hirsutum (Hairy Stereum)
Postia stiptica Stereum sanguinolentum
Trametes versicolor  
Heterobasidiomycetes (Jellies)  
Calocera pallidospathulata Dacrymyces stillatus (Orange Jelly)
Calocera viscosa (Yellow Antler)  
Gasteromycetes (Puffballs)  
Bovista nigrescens Mutinus caninus (Dog Stinkhorn)
Crucibulum leave (Common Bird's-nest) Phallus impudicus (Wood Witch/Stinkhorn)
Lycoperdon perlatum (Common Puffball)  
Uredinomycetes (Rusts)  
Coleosporium tussilaginis Puccinia lapsanae
Phragmidium violaceum Puccinia poarum
Puccinia calcitrapae Pucciniastrum vaccinii
Puccinia coronata  
Ustilaginomycetes (Smuts)  
Urocystis ranunculi on R.repans
Ramularia rhabdospora on P.lanceolata

We are grateful to Colin for his comprehensive report. Don supplied the English names.

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