“These specimens were found growing on decaying (cubicle brown rot)
Douglas fir stumps and logs, actually growing OUT
of and IN the
wood, specimens emerging between the bark and the cambium layer. (I
had never seen that growth habit in a Dermocybe before. The area
had been logged by the F.S. about 26 years ago, so it was second
growth woods of D.fir, hemlock and some Grand fir as well as pines
(sp?)that had been introduced. There were piles of burned wood
nearby. Undergrowth in the area included berberis, cornus, bracken
fern, blueberry, and creeping manzanita around the burned area
where the mushrooms were found. Within 2 feet of these red
concolorous Dermocybes were also growing flushes of D. semi-
sanguinea, D. phoenicea and several sp. of orange and yellow gilled
dermocybes – all within arms length or each other,all intermixed in
the duff. No moss, no spruce. Only the red Dermocybes were growing
on the wood. The gills had a shimmering red iridescence, tending
more toward red-orange tones rather than the deep clear red of the
D. sanguinea that I have previously collected in Sweden and Finland.
Another flush of these red beauties had been found a day earlier by the foray group led by Dr. Susan Libonati-Barnes in a similar habitat at a higher elevation of 4000 ft, with lodgepole pine nearby, but in the same type of habitat – growing out of cubicle brown rotting Doug fir with burned wood debris nearby.
An on-the-spot dyebath experiment (boiling water poured over a chopped
up cap), produced the same colors on premordanted (alum=red and
iron=purple) wool and silk that are routinely produced from D.
sanguinea, D. semi-sanguinea, and D. phoenicea. Cortinarius
californicus produces an entirely different range of hues – toward
rusty orange with all mordants… "
Check out http://www.mushroomsforcolor.com/BreitenbushMushroomDyes.htm to see the dyes that these red Dermocybe mushrooms made!