Observation 113805: Psathyrella (Fr.) Quél.

When: 2012-10-18

Collection location: Christchurch Park, Ipswich, Suffolk, England [Click for map]

Who: Martin Cooper (martincito)

No specimen available

Small group of purplish-brown mushrooms growing in grass photographed in the rain.
Conical caps about 2.5 cm diameter, mauve-brown central zone, pale slightly striate towards margin.
Adnate gills, pale beige with darker speckles (mottled) and pale edges, white where gills join stem.
Stem 8 cm long, a few mm diameter, pale grey with white powdery patches particularly near top where they resolved into vetical lines. Clump of white downy mycelium at base. No spore print but dark spores scraped from cap. The spores were dextrinoid (brown in Melzer’s reagent), oval, thick walled with apical germ pore and subtle patterning. Twenty spores were measured, extremes discarded, giving ranges of 11.5-13.5 × 6-7 microns.


Copy of original photo with info removed in hope that it wouldn’t be rotated in error.
Copy of original photo with info removed in hope that it wouldn’t be rotated in error.

Proposed Names

-1% (2)
Used references
Based on microscopic features
55% (1)
Recognized by sight

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
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Add Comment
Very helpful… thanks
By: Martin Cooper (martincito)
2012-10-18 16:10:02 PDT (-0700)

That really is very helpful, Bryan. I keep trying to see (and photograph) cystidia with very mixed results so far. Problem is finding the time to do it when the mushroom is still fresh, before it dries up or deliquesces. But it’s nice to have a challenge!

PS So far this was my finest hour with a gill under the scope http://mushroomobserver.org/image/show_image/271993?obs=113409&q=lSp4

By: Byrain
2012-10-18 15:49:50 PDT (-0700)

This has an very brittle white stipe and distinctly brown gills in maturity, Panaeolus tend to have stiffer stems and distinctly black gills in maturity. Mostly though, its the general look, its takes some time to get a hang of the subtle differences in the Psathyrellaceae genera. You can also rule out Panaeolina due to the smooth spores, but even without micro I’d think it looks more like Psathyrella.

You should try making a section like this: http://www.mushroomexpert.com/microscope_sections.html

Try looking for cheilocystidia on the gill edge, pleurocystidia (if they are present on the gill face), and the pileus. The thinner the better, it takes some practice to get it right.

Thanks Byrain
By: Martin Cooper (martincito)
2012-10-18 15:40:44 PDT (-0700)

Thanks Byrain!
Regards, Martin

By: Byrain
2012-10-18 15:37:58 PDT (-0700)

Here is a link to an European Psathyrella key, I’m not really sure how useful it is, but it may be worth trying without a better alternative. :)


Created: 2012-10-18 14:51:55 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2012-10-18 15:33:42 PDT (-0700)
Viewed: 51 times, last viewed: 2017-06-14 04:27:26 PDT (-0700)
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