Observation 161868: Tubaria hiemalis Romagn. ex Bon

Code: Bot_784/2014_DSC0011

Habitat: modestly southeast inclined mountain slope, mixed forest, Fagus sylvatica and Picea abies dominant; overgrown former pasture on scree, rocks and boulders, calcareous ground, relatively warm and dry place, partly protected from direct rain by tree canopies, average precipitations ~ 3.000 mm/year, average temperature 7-9 deg C, elevation 595 m (1.950 feet), alpine phytogeographical region.

Substratum: rotten organic debris on forest ground, mostly wood chips, fruits and leaves of Fagus sylvatica.

Place: Lower Trenta valley, at the foot of Mt. Srebrnjak, between villages Soča and Trenta, near ‘Na melu’ place, East Julian Alps, Posočje, Slovenia EC.

Comments: Species/Index Fungorum treats the name Tubaria hiemalis as a synonym of T. furfuracea, however MycoBank considers the name as validated. In any way, T. hiemalis it is a questionable species for several mycologists. Many do not separate it from Tubaria furfuracea Ref.:(2) stating that in most of distinguishing traits all intermediates exist and hence the existing differences rather represent natural variability than distinct species. Nevertheless,what is considered T. furfuracea grows in summer and what T. hiemalis in winter. Be as it may, this year, probably because we have unusually mild and wet winter, these LBMs (‘little brown mushrooms’ – according to Arora, Ref.:(6)) have been growing in large numbers everywhere in Fagus/Picea woods in Trenta valley during the whole February and the first part of March. Winter time and clearly cylindric – capitate cheilocystidia, which should not be present in T. furfuracea according to Ref.:(3), encouraged me to decide for T. hiemalis.

Growing scattered around; many fruit bodies present. Growing attached to rotting beechnuts (seeds as well as on their capsules), small pieces of rotten wood, but also on pure layered rotting Fagus sylvatica leaves without observable pieces of any other substrate. The latter doesn’t fit to substratum description in Ref.:(3). Pilei diameter from 1.2 to 2.8 cm; hygrophanous, pilei color fades to light pale ocher in dry weather (see Fig.: 9); SP ocher-brown, abundant, oac846.

Nikon D700/Nikkor Micro 105mm/f2.8

Species Lists


Photographed on March 2. 2014, Bot_787/2014_DSC0205
Photographed on March 5. 2014 in dry weather, Bot_788/2014_DSC0211
Cylindric – capitate cheilocystidia.

Proposed Names

57% (1)
Eye3 Eyes3
Recognized by sight: LBM (little brown mushroom) – according to Arora ;-) – winter time and cylindric – capitate cheilocystidia
Used references: (1) Personal communication with Mr. Bojan Rot, www.gobenabovskem.com
(2) G. J. Krieglsteiner (Hrsg.), Die Grosspilze Baden-Württembergs, Band 4, Ulmer (2003), p 424.
(3) J. Breitenbach, F. Kraenzlin, Eds., Fungi of Switzerland, Vol.4. Verlag Mykologia (1984), p 358.
(4) R.M. Daehncke, 1200 Pilze in Farbfotos, AT Verlag (2009), p 638.
(5) M. Bon, Parey’s Buch der Pilze, Kosmos (2005), p 246.
(6) D. Arora, Mushrooms Demystified, Ten Speed Press, Berkeley (1986), p 402.
Based on microscopic features: Spores smooth. Dimensions: 7,1 [7,8 ; 8,1] 8,8 × 4,4 [4,9 ; 5,1] 5,6 microns, Q = 1,4 [1,6] 1,8; N = 41; C = 95%, Me = 8 × 5 microns; Qe = 1,6. Olympus CH20, NEA 100x/1.25, magnification 1.000 x, oil, in water (spores) and NEA 40x/0.65, magnification 400x, in water, congo red (trama, cystidia). AmScope MA500 digital camera.
Based on chemical features: Taste mushroomy, mildly unpleasant; smell indistinctive.

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


Add Comment
a lot of open questions
By: amadej trnkoczy (amadej)
2014-03-23 07:45:14 CDT (-0400)

Thank you Irene for your comment. Slovenian checklist simplifies and considers T. furfuracea and T. hiemalis as two separate species. But I’ve observed that there are a lot of open questions with this group. Good there is still something to explore ;-)

By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2014-03-22 08:02:16 CDT (-0400)

to see this documentation! This looks exactly like the one I have wanted to call T. hiemalis, more brown than the reddish/orangish furfuracea.

In Funga Nordica, Tubaria furfuracea is used as collective name, including hiemalis, anthracophila and romagnesiana – not necessarily synomyms. I’m not sure that this group is sorted out completely. We might have more than one “hiemalis” :-)

Created: 2014-03-22 07:47:37 CDT (-0400)
Last modified: 2014-03-22 07:55:20 CDT (-0400)
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