When: 2007-11-12

Collection location: Santa Rosa, Sonoma Co., California, USA [Click for map]

Who: Debbie Drechsler (debdrex)

No specimen available

Hey Douglas, these were apparently fresh because the gills turned greenish within hours after picking. I just tasted what’s left and they didn’t seem exceptionally bitter at first but have left a bitter aftertaste. Think I’ll go have some chocolate.
These were fruiting on (invisible) roots of a cedrus deodara. After looking at pictures and descriptions of both I’m going to stick with my identification. Several pictures of H. fasciculare do include black veil remnants and there seems to be quite a bit of variation in gill and cap color for both species.

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Probably H. fasciculare
By: Douglas Smith (douglas)
2007-11-14 18:28:10 CST (-0600)

Well, to tell the truth I haven’t been tasting these myself. After tasting many, many Russulas now, I don’t go out of my way to taste bad tasting ‘shrooms. But anyway, the H. capnoides isn’t supposed to be bitter, and also not have the green on the gills. But if they have greenish gills, and were bitter, then there you go.

But the yellowish to pallid gills, and the blackish veil fragments on the margins, I’ve been calling H. capnoides. But the bitter/not bitter taste is a better distinguishing field mark. (How yellow is yellow, and how green is green… can always confuse.)

Are you sure?
By: Douglas Smith (douglas)
2007-11-14 18:02:01 CST (-0600)

The gills don’t look green enough on these, and they have veil reminants on the cap margins stained black by spores, which you don’t really seen in H. fasciculare. You should taste a little, and see how bitter they are, if they are terribly bitter, then you are right they are H. fasciculare.