When: 2016-12-16

Collection location: Xewkija, Gozo, Malta [Click for map]

Who: Stephen Mifsud (FungusMan)

No specimen available


Collector (leg.): Stephen Mifsud
Habitat: Artificial mulch under Cypress and Oleander trees
Habitat notes: Road embelishment
Remarks: Several specimens in numerous solitary groups

Main characters
Morphological type: Agaric, Panaeoloid/Psathyrelloid
Hymenium: Lamellae
Length: 48 – 92mm (mean: 67.8mm)
Umbo: Not distinct but can be defined to be present and broad
Ring (Veil): No, but remnants of partial (pileus) veil as white appendages on the pileus rim
Cup (Volva): No
Texture / feel: Smooth, damp
Smell: Indistinct
Taste: Not tested
Spore print: Black
Stipe/flesh bruising No reaction
Stipe/flesh exudate: No
Remarks: Hygrophanous

Cap diameter: 20 – 37mm (mean: 26.6mm)
Cap colour: Straw coour darkening abruptly to brown towards the margin
Cap shape: Conical then bell-shaped (umbonate)
Cap margin: Entire, regular, conspicuoysly appendiculate by white veilar remnants
Cap texture: Smooth
Cap ornamentation: None
Cap additional notes: Hygrophanous, with change in colour towrds the margin of the pileus

Stipe length : 40 – 82mm (mean: 59.2mm)
Stipe diameter: 4 – 5mm (mean: 4.5mm)
Stipe colour: Pale brown to cream with silvery streaks
Stipe flesh: Fistulose, white or cream
Stipe shape: Cylindrical, slightly curved or arcuate
Stipe cross-section: Terete
Stipe texture: Often with shiny, white fibrilous smally patches forming scale-like patterns
Stipe strength: Breaks easily with a snap

Hymenium (Lamellae)
Lamella width (mm): 4 -5 mm
Lamella attachment: Adnexed
Lamella colour: Medium greyish dull brown, paler towards the cap
Lamella edge colour: Pale greyish beige, contrasting from dull lamella face

Lamella edge profile shape: Almost straight to shallowly convex
Lamella spacing / density: Moderate to very crowded
Lamellulae: Frequent, 3 series (3 different lengths)
Intervenose lamellae: Not observed

Lamella additional notes : Lamella are originally pale brown and gradually they become covered with the dark spores, forming a gradient of increasing brown colour towards the edge. Edge then contrastingly white.

Micro Characters

Basidiospores: 4
Basidium length (range): 19.5 – 27.85 µm
Basidium length (mean): 23.6 µm
Basidium width (range): 11.25 – 13.9 µm
Basidium width (mean): 12.2 µm
Sterigmata length 4.6 µm
Shape Stout and short, clavate, rounded-oblong, abruptly narrowing at its proximal third widest along half its length.
Remarks Sterigma large, broadly triangular

Pleurocystidia (gill faces): Absent
Pleurocystidia size: n/a
Pleurocystidia other notes: n/a
Cheilocystidia (gill edges): Numerous cheilocystidia, in unterminated rows at the very edge, clustered, utriform, quite homogenous except varying in their width.
Cheilocystidium ornamentation: smooth
Cheilocystidium length range: 31.7 – 42.3 µm
Cheilocystidium length mean: 36.94 µm
Cheilocystidium width range: 8.21 – 15.6 µm
Cheilocystidium width mean: 11.55 µm

Spore print: Black
Spore length (range) : 11.4 – 15.4 µm
Spore length (mean) : 13.8 µm
Spore width (range) : 5.5 – 7.6 µm
Spore width (mean) : 6.5 µm
Spore Q factor (range) : 1.8 – 2.5
Spore Q factor (mean) : 2.1
Spore shape : Oblong-elliptical
Oil bodies : Not observed, possibly obscured by the dark colour of the wall
Amyloid reaction : Inamyloid
Spore surface : Smooth
Apiculum : Present, very small, indistinct.
Germinal pore : Present, central, small

Pileipellis type: Hymenoderme, of broadly elliptic hyphae, 40-80um long and up to 28um wide, with tapering ends, often seen in chains.

Veil: Several iregularly shaped hyphae, intricated into a fibrillous mat. Hyphae 3-9um wide, curved, bent or arcuate, with irregular width and random projections, these usually straight, conical or knobby. Clamp junction observed.
Caulocystidia / hair – not examined
Radicles/rhizoids at stipe base - Felty, white, not abundant.
Clamp junctions: Present, at least in veil elements

Length:pileus width ratio - 2.50
Pileus:Stipe width ratio - 5.90



Proposed Names

47% (2)
Recognized by sight
11% (2)
Recognized by sight
Used references
Based on microscopic features
Based on chemical features

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= Observer’s choice
= Current consensus


Add Comment
Excellent notes!
By: walt sturgeon (Mycowalt)
2017-01-02 09:26:41 CST (-0500)

Psathyrella is a difficult genus.

Psathyrella longipes group
By: Stephen Mifsud (FungusMan)
2017-01-02 05:15:57 CST (-0500)

Thank for your comments and suggestions. I guess P. longipes group suits better. I would like to know if there are European candidates within the longipes group that can give a better specificity for these Maltese population.

What about the taxon Psathyrella marcescibilis (Britzelm.) Singer ?

Any literature on this group is welcomed.

Best wishes for the new Year

By: Alan Rockefeller (Alan Rockefeller)
2016-12-21 11:05:38 CST (-0500)

P. longipes is a name from California so I would be surprised if it turned up in Malta. Jonathan Frank has ITS sequences of this species if you would like to check the DNA.