Observation 65614: Amanita velosa (Peck) Lloyd

When: 2011-04-16

Collection location: Clearlake Oaks, Lake Co., California, USA [Click for map]

Who: Ron Lawrence (Rondango)

No specimen available

This has a velosa tint to it, more so when lightly rubbed.

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Add Comment
I’m not sure I follow you, Debbie.
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2011-04-18 17:34:24 CDT (-0400)


Your drawing of the sectioned velosa button shows exactly what I’m talking about. The two sides of the stem make a pair of parentheses. There is no bulb. This is typical of the development of a fruiting body in all species of section Vaginatae…and quite different from what is to be seen in Ron Lawrence’s photos.

There’s no ambiguity with regard to whether the current specimen could be anything at all in section Vaginatae. It can’t be anything in the section. The fundamental definition of section Vaginatae as Bas put it forward is satisfied by the sectioned button in your drawing and not by Ron’s photograph of a cross-section.

Very best,


I hear what you are saying Rod…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2011-04-18 17:15:48 CDT (-0400)

and this mushroom does have some ambiguous qualities, but here are my thoughts: is the “bulb” truly a bulb or a straighter stipe surrounded by universal veil? Is the volva material near the gills a true annulus or a pseudoskirt?

“Bas observed that when buttons of the Vaginatae were cut in half, the developing fruiting body inside the primordium was more centrally located even (or especially) in early stages of development.”

That was not the case for this unopened but sectioned example of a velosa, collected and sketched in 2004 by me, linked to below. I did a number of sketches of various amanita buttons over the years, for just this sort of discussion!


Whatever this is, it is NOT an ocreata, but it could be a member of section Amanita, one of the gemmatoid or pantheroid things. I would feel more comfy in my ID if I could see it in a more developed state, tho.

The volvar material that is breaking away below the cap looks more like a velosa volva than the close cup of a gemmata or pantherina; I have seen a pseudorhiza like is shown here on some of those odd gemmatoid things locally, too. I have never seen warts like that on an ocreata, altho they could be with velosa or buttons from section Amanita other than muscaria.

I suppose a bit of ambiguity should be shown in this ID, since it will be difficult to resolve to anyones satisfaction at this point, unless the button got saved and grew up a bit.

No worries though, and merely an interesting taxonomic quandry, as long as nobody wants to eat it! ;)

Different types of development of fruitingbodies of Amanita noticeable in the button stage
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2011-04-18 15:57:33 CDT (-0400)

Let’s set the issue of whether the button is ocreata aside for a minute. Apparently, I failed to make a point that I think is helpful in dealing with Amanita buttons. I’d like to try once more.

Some amanitas have bulbs (at least before they age) and some have stems that Bas called “totally elongating”…they never have a bulb. Amanita sect. Vaginatae (hence, A. velosa) has a volval sac surround a stipe that never has a basal bulb.

Bas observed that when buttons of the Vaginatae were cut in half, the developing fruiting body inside the primordium was more centrally located even (or especially) in early stages of development. In contrast, the fruitingbodies of things like muscaria and ocreata and the lepidellas, etc. begin the development of all their parts very high up in the primordium. Bas pointed out that when you section a moderately developed button of sect. Vaginatae the sectioned developing stem looks more like a pare of compressed parentheses (the x-section of a tube that is broadest in the middele). In the taxa that start development high in the primordium, a section of a button later in development shows a large bulb in place and a stem that is very narrow at the top and broadens rapidly downward…with a nearly triangular cross-section.

In Ron’s photographs, the form taken by the developing fruitingbody is of the non-Vaginatae type.

Hence, it’s very unlikely that button would have developed into A. velosa or any other member of the Vaginatae.

Very best,


a nice comparison to a halved ocreata button here:
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2011-04-18 14:53:54 CDT (-0400)


and my illustration of another halved ocreata button here:

which also shows the hollow chambers within the stipe, a common feature in ocreata.

both links show ocreata buttons with a base wider than its cap, in contrast to the velosa button depicted here.

I agree that this is a velosa…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2011-04-18 12:06:53 CDT (-0400)

I also agree that it is unusual enough to NOT be considered for the table.

The lack of typical cap color is due to the universal veil sticking strongly to the cap, which is also undoubtedly obscuring the striate margin.

The base of the button/egg is more narrow than the top…typical of a velosa and atypical for ocreata.

The cracking of the veil into warts is a fairly common occurence in this mushroom, as I illustrated here:


and here, where the button also shows no color as it breaks:


No, I didn’t
By: Ron Lawrence (Rondango)
2011-04-18 11:15:29 CDT (-0400)

eat this. Most deffinitley not enough well developed traits of velosa to convince me of safe edibility, just a hint of cap color. No KOH reation. The rubbing was to remove what remained of the UV material.(hard to remove)

The first
By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2011-04-17 17:29:34 CDT (-0400)

comment I posted said that I had trouble seeing that color also.

Second looks convinced me. But I also agree that the shape of the fruitbody is off for that section of Amanita. There also doesn’t appear to be much in the way of a striate/sulcate/ribbed margin…

I had trouble seeing that color
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2011-04-17 16:59:43 CDT (-0400)

in the cross section.

Sometimes ocreata that has come out of the volva has pinkish tints on the cap (so does A. bisporigera, on occasion).

But I’m more worried about what’s happening in the developing buttom itself as previously noted.


By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2011-04-17 16:54:23 CDT (-0400)

Yeah I would not be comfortable eating that, but it does look like the cross-section shows a pinkish-brown cuticle.

I’m a little concerned…
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2011-04-17 16:30:50 CDT (-0400)

The form of the developing mushroom in the button raises concerns on two points. The stem does seem to me to be developing like a totally elongating stem of section Vaginatae (the stem is narrowing upward very markedly with a robust, bulb-like block of tissue being left behind below), and there is a big, fat wedge of internal volval limb between the stem and the bottom edges of the gills (also very unusual of species of sect. Vaginatae because the immature cap usually fits the stem more like a thimble on a finger). Also, I don’t know of any case of white-capped specimens of velosa taking on a color after being rubbed.

The specimen is show on what looks like a kitchen cutting board. I guess you didn’t eat this?

Does anyone have a good series of shots of developing A. velosa (button to at least partially mature, with cut-away shots)…or has such a series been posted?

I’m a little concerned by how much the specimen looks like a button of A. ocreata?


Created: 2011-04-16 23:50:27 CDT (-0400)
Last modified: 2011-04-18 17:16:29 CDT (-0400)
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