When: 1997-12-15

Collection location: Santa Cruz Mountains, Santa Cruz Co., California, USA [Click for map]

Who: Nathan Wilson (nathan)

No specimen available

Found during a Fungus Federation of Santa Cruz foray. Note the small size and the dark central disc. The wood it was growing appeared to be coast redwood. The habitat was a streambed filled with redwoods.

The date is only accurate to the month.

Taking Darvin’s word on the id (see comment). They still seem unusually small for an Armillaria.

Species Lists


Loaded from Armillaria/species/1997-12-slide-1.jpg.
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Proposed Names

-23% (4)
Recognized by sight
77% (2)
Recognized by sight

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Add Comment
i’m wondering
By: Danny Newman (myxomop)
2013-11-22 19:31:53 MST (-0700)

why A. cepistipes is absent from every online key/reference for North American Armillaria while it’s listed among the taxa present in/reported from NA in the following paper:

Distribution of Armillaria species in California
Mycologia, 93(5), 2001, pp. 821-830.
Kendra Baumgartner1 & David M. Rizzo

“There are nine different Armillaria species in North America that vary in host range, geographic distribution, and virulence. Two species, A. calvescens Berube & Dessur. and A. gemina Berube & Dessur., are believed to be unique to North America, while the distributions of the remainder, including A. cepistipes Velen., A. gallica Marxmiiller & Romagn., A. mellea (Vahl: Fr.) P. Kumm., A. nabsnona Volk & Burdsall, A. ostoyae (Romagn.) Herink, A. sinapina Berube & Dessur., and A. tabescens (Scop.) Emel, extend to other continents in the Northern Hemisphere (Volk and Burdsall 1995, Banik et al 1996, Ota et al 1998).” [emphasis added]

Yes, the wood was dead
By: Nathan Wilson (nathan)
2007-09-23 22:35:31 MST (-0700)

What that wood was is the biggest question in my mind about this collection. I clearly remember thinking it was redwood at the time I looked at it and I’ve been around redwoods all my life. However, the fact that it was in a stream bed makes me wonder if it couldn’t have somehow been some sort of maple which would be typical of A. cepistipes. I would certainly look at it a whole lot closer if I were to see this again.

Very pretty and quite striking
By: PaganHippie
2007-09-23 20:50:34 MST (-0700)

Was the wood they were growing on dead? Living in redwood country myself (Humboldt county, CA), it’s very unusual to find fungi growing on redwood of any kind, though I do sometimes find Artist’s Conk on dead trunks.

Armillaria cepistipes
By: Darvin DeShazer (darv)
2007-09-01 14:15:58 MST (-0700)

Cap light brown with dark scales on the disc only. Margin striate and lacking scales. Stipe clavate with a thin, cobweb annulus. Habit: fruiting in clusters of 2 or 3.