Observation 64700: Geopora cooperi Harkn.

When: 2011-03-25

Collection location: North Lakeport, Lake Co., California, USA [Click for map]

Who: Ron Lawrence (Rondango)

No specimen available

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Recognized by sight

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the perception of odor is an individual matter…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2011-04-09 11:41:24 EDT (-0400)

no two noses are exactly alike!

the macro on this fungus is spot-on for Geopora cooperi, and it is a common spring fungus here in California.

I’m slightly concerned with your description of the odor.
By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2011-04-09 07:39:53 EDT (-0400)

I don’t smell “sweet interior latex paint” with this species. But your description of “ham-like” taste is very similar to Henry Pavelek’s impression of “bacon-like” when added to an omelette. The hairs can grow into the nearby leaf litter or soil, making cleaning difficult. But typically the mature felty covering can nearly disappear under light washing.

I believe it is Geopora cooperi f. cooperi that is smaller (sporocarp less than 1.5 cm in width) and typically a low-elevation form.

Edible, yes
By: Ron Lawrence (Rondango)
2011-04-08 23:32:39 EDT (-0400)

It smelled like a sweet interior latex paint when fresh. It did cook up well with a ham-like immpression. It was a little grity and hard to clean. I could see the felt-like hairs in the 2nd photo with hand lense even after washing.
I believe the surrounding pines were imported from local higher elevations over the last 25yrs. Thank you for the information Daniel

1st & 3rd photos
By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2011-04-08 20:55:48 EDT (-0400)

look to be Geopora cooperi because of the felt-like tiny hairs which appear to cover the sporocarp. The middle photo appears to have been washed or cleaned, which can remove these hairs and make identification problematic without spore microscopy. Nonetheless, this is likely larger form of Geopora cooperi, which is currently further broken down into G.c. f. cooperi and G. c. f. gilkeyae. I don’t remember which is the larger form, but this is definately the larger form.

The sporocarp does appear slightly immature. Mature material should have visible darker spore masses within the gleba tissue, as well as a strong pleasant aroma. In Helen Gilkey’s 1916 “A Revision of the Tuberales of California” she identifies Geopora cooperi, Geopora magnifica as being 4-10cm in diameter. I believe G. magnifica was later renamed into Geopora cooperi f. gilkeyae, but cannot confirm this. The large form, in my experience, is usually at higher elevations, often associated with Pinus, and can easily reach fist-sized sporocarps. It is also extremely edible.