Public Description of Phellinus Quél.

Title: Public Description
Name: Phellinus Quél.
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Literature :
Ryvarden, L.; Johansen, I. 1980. A preliminary polypore flora of East Africa. :1-636

Page number : 129
Description type : Non-original description
Description : PHELLINUS Quel.
Elench. Fung. p. 172, 1886.
Fruitbodies pileate to resupinate, perennial, rarely annual, pileus dark brown to black in species with a crust, more rarely pale ochraceous, hirsute to glabrous, often sulcate now and then radially cracked in older fruitbodies, pores variable, but mostly small, tubes usually stratified, context thin and dense. Hyphal system dimitic, generative hyphae usually hyaline, thin-walled and narrow, more rarely wider and pale golden brown, setal hyphae, tramal setae or hymenial setae absent or present, spores of variable shapes, hyaline to rusty brown, thin-walled to thick-walled, mostly IKI negative, dextrinoid in a few species. All species on dead wood. Cosmopolitan genus with numerous species which in many groups can be difficult to separate.

Type species: Phellinus rubriporus Quel. (a synonym for P. torulosus Pers.).

REMARKS. Phellinus is the largest genus of all polypores and undoubtedly also one of the most difficult ones. The reason is partly that many specimens are sterile while collected and this may make a definite determination difficult. Further, it seems that there in some groups such as around Phellinus igniarius and P. senex there may be races rather than separate species. The user of the flora will certainly find difficulties in his determination as we suspect that some species may be to narrowly defined. However, the only way to see whether a species-concept is too narrow or too wide, is to use the key and then judge the result. It may be that there still is a strong evolution within the genus and that intermediate specimens will turn up now and then, making delimitations of some species difficult. The natural variation of many species is still not known properly and we wonder whether the pore size may be so static as it appear from the description given here, and how much variation that may be tolerated. Experience from species in the Polyporaceae has shown that the poresize may vary within very wide limits for some species and that too much emphasis were placed on this characteristic in the past. This may also be the fact within this genus.
There is a problem when it comes to the colour of the spores. In some species they start as pale yellow, but with maturity they become more rusty brown, this is especially distinct when sections is taken in the outer part of the tubes and from the old and stuffed parts of the tubes. In the latter part, frequently the spores will be more thickwalled, larger and more deeply coloured than in the former part. In other species the coloration seems to be a rather specific character.

Remarks (public) : The closest relative is undoubtedly Inonotus, which is separated mainly by generally annual, softer basidiocarps. Normally there is no difficulty to separate the two genera in the field, but there are some species of Phellinus with annual basidiocarps (such as P. erectus) where there are transitions between hyaline generative hyphae and skeletal hyphae. Hyphal structure in the Hymenochaetaceae does not conform reddily to the traditional set of hyphal systems developed from other families of poroid fungi. Murrill (1907) split Phellinus as conceived here, into several smaller genera which, however, mostly have been neglected by later mycologists. Fiasson & Niemelä (1984) reintroduced Murrill’s genera, but redefined his generic concepts on the European species only, excluding numerous tropical species. We would not be surprised if the tropical species will demonstrate transitions between the many small segregated genera and feel that Phellinus for the time being should be kept as a single genus.
However, there may be those who prefer a narrower refined generic concept and below we have listed genera proposed on species which here are included in Phellinus.

For a synopsis of the world species of Phellinus, see Larsen & Cobb-Poulle 1990. A very detailed study of biosystematic and cultural characters in the genus, mostly based on European species, is given by Fischer (1987). Cerny (1985) has treated the Phellinus pini complex in detail while a survey of Phellinus in France has recently been published by Pieri & Rivoire (1992). Phellinus gilvus (Schw.) Pat. has been reported from Europe among others by Bondartsev (1953) and Bernicchia (1991). However, we have not seen a single European specimen of this annual thin species so widespread in the tropics and it is therefore excluded from the European flora.
Description : PHELLINUS Quél. – Ench. Fung. p. 172, 1886.

Basidiocarps perennial, resupinate to pileate, single or imbricate with decurrent pore surface; pileus if present, yellowish, rusty brown, gray to black, tomentose, hispid, glabrous or deeply cracked; pore surface brownish, pores isodiametric, more rarely irregular and angular and slightly split; context dark reddish brown, umber or yellowish brown, mostly woody, more rarely tough-fibrous; hyphal system dimitic with transitions between thin-walled generative hyphae and this thick-walled skeletal type hyphae; generative hyphae hyaline to pale yellow, narrow, thin-walled, simple-septate; skeletal hyphae yellowish to rusty brown, non-septate or with occasional simple septa, mostly thick-walled and wider than the generative hyphae; hymenial setae and tramal setae absent or present; setal hyphae absent or present in margin, context or hymenium, spores globose to cylindrical, smooth, hyaline to rusty brown, thin- to thick-walled, dextrinoid to negative in Melzer’s reagent; on dead or living conifers and hardwoods, causing a white rot. Large, cosmopolitan genus.
Type species: Polyporus igniarius L.:Fr.

Description author: Erlon (Request Authorship Credit)

Created: 2015-03-09 15:44:56 PDT (-0700) by Erlon (Herbert Baker)
Last modified: 2015-03-09 15:45:27 PDT (-0700) by Erlon (Herbert Baker)
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