Observation 193309: Leptonia carnea Largent

Growing near sidewalk in duff under redwoods. Other Entoloma sp. present. Spores are pink and angular, 5 sided. Basidia club shaped. Velvety/tomentose texture. Gills purple when young! Height 3-4cm.

Proposed Names

-2% (2)
Used references: Used this Entolomataceae key. Seems to fit the description of the color and texture of cap gills and stipe.

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


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by your cautious language …
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2014-12-15 13:32:30 PST (-0800)

I have to assume that this is the most robust example that you have ever seen of this species, too.

It is rather unusual for Leptonias in general, no? The vast majority of ones that I see are quite slender.
I have seen other photo examples of more stocky than the norm carnea, but this one takes the cake!

They are stocky
By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2014-12-15 11:12:50 PST (-0800)

but yes: mushrooms, variable.
I have one photo of some fairly stocky ones. I’ll dig it up if I have time. Leptonia carnea is often fairly stout and large. I recently found some with caps around 6 cm across.

strength of KOH concentration might be the answer …
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2014-12-15 10:57:50 PST (-0800)

also, the fact that carnea is a good dye/pigment means that it is colorfast. Perhaps Largent used some of these terms interchangeably?

these fruit bodies still seem to be unusually stocky. do you have photos of other carnea that are also so squat, Christian? I know that you find these frequently in SC.

Connor’s photos appear more akin to Entoloma bloxamii in heft than any Leptonia that I have seen. But I know that mushrooms are variable. Largent states that it is young fbs that have the purplish gills. But again, that variability thing.

Nice find, and nice general expansion of our species concept. Thanks for posting.

By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2014-12-15 10:21:02 PST (-0800)

Yeah, I was never sure what Largent meant by “insoluble” – as you mentioned, KOH has always extracted some pigment from the cells in fruitbodies I’ve tried. But unlike many other Leptonia it does not turn the pigment vinaceous brown, perhaps that’s what he meant?

Thanks Christian!
By: Connor Adams (CLAdams)
2014-12-14 22:00:51 PST (-0800)

“It is one of the most distinctive blue-black species of Leptonia because of the blue pigment which insoluble in 3% KOH

I tried this and a purple pigment was readily extracted, my KOH solution is likely greater than 3% though. Apparently the pigment has been used in watercolor palettes!

By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2014-12-13 18:05:24 PST (-0800)

I’ve posted a photo of the relevant part of Largen’ts monograph here:

Squat forms of this species are not uncommon. The purple gills are pretty typical as well, especially in older fruitbodies. In our area, few other mushrooms look very much like it. Leptonia “pseudocarnea” nom prov. (which may be a described species by another name) has paler gills, different colors, a hollow stipe, and taller, more slender fruitbodies.

Both species are quite beautiful.

Thanks for that picture!
By: Connor Adams (CLAdams)
2014-12-13 14:49:35 PST (-0800)

I couldn’t find a good picture or description for that species, but I definitely agree now it is not violaceanegra. I am still not satisfied on Leptonia carnea but it is also rare and descriptions are limited so I don’t know. Maybe somebody on here with a copy of Largents monograph on Entoloma would know.

I would be surprised if it is not described somewhere, considering I collected it less than 50 yards from D. Largents old lab.

unusually stocky Leptonia!
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2014-12-13 09:01:08 PST (-0800)

the purplish gills are odd, too. aberrant forms of carnea, or something else entirely?

unlikely that it is violaceonigra, tho, which looks like this:


Created: 2014-12-12 22:30:27 PST (-0800)
Last modified: 2014-12-13 08:55:17 PST (-0800)
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