Tricholoma are fairly fleshy white-spored gilled mushrooms which are found worldwide generally growing in woodlands. The classic definition was white-spored mushroom with a clearly fleshy stem, sinuate to notched gills; relatively robust, terrestrial; no universal veil, partial veil absent or disappearring early, sometime leaving remnants on the cap margin; cap convex or bell-shaped; stem fibrillose or scaly.
These are ectomycorrhizal fungi, existing in a symbiotic relationship with various species of coniferous or broad-leaved trees. The generic name derives from the Greek trichos (τριχος) meaning hair and loma (λωμα) meaning fringe or border, although only a few species (such as T. vaccinum) have shaggy caps which fit this description.
Some well-known species are the East Asian Tricholoma matsutake, also known as “matsutake” or songi, and the North American species Tricholoma magnivelare, also known as “ponderosa mushroom”, “American matsutake”, or “Pine mushroom”. Some are safe to eat, yet there are a few poisonous members, such as T. pardinum, T. tigrinum and T. equestre.
Many species originally described within Tricholoma have since been moved to other genera. These include the Wood blewit (Clitocybe nuda), previously Tricholoma nudum, blewit (Clitocybe saeva), previously Tricholoma personatum, and St George’s mushroom (Calocybe gambosa) previously Tricholoma gambosum.