Please do not re-click a link while waiting for a page to load. (It’s slower and degrades site speed for all users.)
To get images for machine learning, see MO Images for Machine Learning


When: 2013-06-15

Collection location: Western Cape, South Africa [Click for map]

Who: ndevilliers

No specimen available


Proposed Names

28% (1)
Recognized by sight: A guess
72% (7)
Recognized by sight
6% (2)
Recognized by sight
53% (3)
Used references: Nicky Alssopp

Please login to propose your own names and vote on existing names.

= Observer’s choice
= Current consensus


Add Comment
I think you’re right, Glenn.
By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2013-12-03 15:18:57 MST (-0700)

Pisolithus tinctorius has been deprecated to Pisolithus arhizus now.

By: Glen van Niekerk (primordius)
2013-12-03 13:54:24 MST (-0700)
Thanks Debbie
By: ndevilliers
2013-06-17 08:28:32 MST (-0700)

Will remember for next time, sorry I’m pretty green around here.

ah, but “which” dye ball?
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2013-06-17 07:46:44 MST (-0700)

nice photo capture. I’m thinking Pisolithus, too.

thanks for sharing your cool image.

Next time, cut it in half for the geeks at home.
Mo info is better than less for ID purposes.

A local expert
By: ndevilliers
2013-06-17 07:38:39 MST (-0700)

confirmed it is a ‘dye ball’.

Could it
By: Elsa (pinknailsgirl)
2013-06-16 05:07:28 MST (-0700)

be a pattern caused by abrupt changes in temperature/weather?

check out this
By: Sam.Schaperow (SamSchaperow)
2013-06-15 19:22:07 MST (-0700)
Not taxonomically helpful comment, but appreciating the natural “art”
By: Sam.Schaperow (SamSchaperow)
2013-06-15 19:19:48 MST (-0700)

The pattern on the mushroom looks quite interesting. Kind of reminds me of a rock.

By: ndevilliers
2013-06-15 19:18:19 MST (-0700)

Unfortunately the picture was taken a long time ago when on holiday. I just recall these alien like pods on the ground. If it helps they were the size of somewhere between a golf and tennis ball.

By: Martin Livezey (MLivezey)
2013-06-15 18:39:50 MST (-0700)

I agree with your skepticism, but one question…, Do you think this Bolete has a mycorrhizal association with the dune grass (admittedly much larger):

It could be a coincidence…,

Hard to say, Martin.
By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2013-06-15 16:58:12 MST (-0700)

In sandy soil, mycorrhizal fungi may fruit at considerable distance from the host plant/shrub/tree. Here in Oregon, Helen V. Smith once identified over 50 species of Cortinarius growing from the same isolated Douglas-fir collected the same day.

But in regard to the legume shown here, I rather doubt it. Fruitings are typically smaller than the host plant, not larger. In this case, considerably larger.

By: Martin Livezey (MLivezey)
2013-06-15 12:51:40 MST (-0700)

Couldn’t the host be the legume in the picture? It looks like a good association to me, and the below ground roots could be much larger than the leaves we see.

By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2013-06-15 12:04:52 MST (-0700)

On the face, Scleroderma seems a good guess. Some species do have very thin peridiums.

If you blow the photo up to maximum size, the exposed gleba seems more brown-spore covered than the typical purplish. Unusual for a Scleroderma, but could still be one.

I believe the gleba is brown. Spore mass in the gleba appears brown. Obvious sandy soil. Scleroderma requires a host plant nearby. No shadow of one in the photo, nor mention in the description.

Pisolithus too needs a host plant.

This would be late fall in South Africa. Might be a puffball?

By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2013-06-15 11:51:57 MST (-0700)

can you take a shot of the fungus cut in two through the base? Scleroderma often has thick skin, hence the name. Pisolithus should have pea-shaped vesicles inside. This might be something like a truffle or desert truffle (Terfezia). Need to see the interior to make informed guess.