Observation 5081: Russula

When: 2007-11-20

Collection location: Howarth Park, Santa Rosa, California, USA [Click for map]

Who: Debbie Drechsler (debdrex)

No specimen available

A small group of 7 or so, in grass, among oak. The day before some exhibited faint blush of pink on pileus but no pink visible 1 day later. Caps were sticky.
I didn’t taste. Still unclear about how to taste mushrooms for ID. Do I lick it? Do I bite off a chunk? Do I get cooties doing it in the field? I used Arora for the ID, but R. basifurcata doesn’t exist in his book, at least by that name. Can you point me to a description? I can’t find any.
Found a description on Mykoweb.


Proposed Names

56% (1)
Recognized by sight
56% (1)
Recognized by sight
Used references: Mushrooms of the Redwood Coast

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= Observer’s choice
= Current consensus


Add Comment
Taste from the edge
By: Douglas Smith (douglas)
2007-11-22 20:50:34 MSK (+0300)

You need to nibble the edge of the cap. You can’t get the taste from licking in Russulas, you need to break up some of the cells in the cap. So, nibble a small part of the edge of the cap, either it will be mild, with no taste, or a fungal taste, or it will be acrid, with a burning chemical taste.

But R. basifurcata is listed in Thiers’ Russulas of CA, which is part of the Agaricales of CA, from Mad River Press, which is published by D. Largent up in Hunbolt. This is the best monograph of Russulas in CA, and has about 110 species listed. Which is still confusing, but it is better than Arora for Russulas, which is really a lose gathering of Russula info at the time.

But in Thiers’ Russulas, there are 3 white to yellow capped, mild tasting, yellow to orange spored Russulas. I’ve looked at the spore ornamentations in the ones from Los Trancos that look like this, and those point to R. basifurcata, and not the other two. Also the description lists the pinkish stains on the cap at times, but the creamy white color over all.

There also is a new monograph of Russula from Vancouver Island, BC, which is pretty good, and can be downloaded fro the Northwest Key Council. It is a little hard to navigate yet, no index, but it is a Ph.D. thesis, and its not quite finished yet.

Taste on these?
By: Douglas Smith (douglas)
2007-11-22 02:46:28 MSK (+0300)

Did you get the taste on these? These look just like what I’ve now called R. basifurcata, from the live oaks of Los Trancos in the mid-pininsula. The taste should be mild. But I wonder from what ref. do you get R. maculata?