When: 2008-07-21

Collection location: Mountain View, Santa Clara Co., California, USA [Click for map]

Who: Douglas Smith (douglas)

Specimen available

Found in an irrigated lawn, under pines and live oak. A different Conocybe sp. than the more common C. albipes. This one is more solid, with a bulbous base, and yellow tones.

Not sure which one it is though…

8/02/2008 – getting back to this…

Got to looking at this one under the scope. And it turns out to require quite a few microscopic detail to get to species.

The first micro-shot is of the gill edge at 400x in Meltzer’s. The gill edge is non-fertile with crowded cheilocystidia, the shape is the classic Conocybe shape, and is called lecythiform. Also the spores are non-dextrinoid.

The second micro-shot is some of the cap surface at 400x in Meltzer’s. It kinda hard to see in this shot, esp. because the surface is a bit confused with tight cellular hyphae and pointed pileocystidia.

The third micro-shot is of the surface of the stipe near the apex at 400x in KOH. Here can be seen a tight grouping of caulocystidia. It turns out the caulocystidia are very taxonomically significant in Conocybe. Here you can see wavy pointed cystidia, with long filiform cystidia, and there is no lecythiform cystidia.

The fourth micro-shot is of spores on the stipe surface near the apex at 1000x in KOH. The spores are smooth, brown, with a germ pore. Many seem to have a subhilar depression. The rough ave. length appears to be near 16 um.

Also in other searches it was determined that the basidia are 2-spored, but I’ll spare you more micro-shots…

ANd it turns out you need to put together all this microscopic detail to get to species. Using all this, and Flora Agaricina Neerlandica vol. 6, the species can be found fairly well to C. siliginea, which is common and cosmopolitan in Europe.

Adding another shot of two more cap found nearby, although are fairly beatup. These show that this one darkens in age, to develop more brown tones.


Proposed Names

29% (1)
Recognized by sight: Conical thin cap, small, brown spores.
-19% (2)
Recognized by sight
86% (1)
Used references: Flora Agaricina Neerlandica Vol. 6, p. 174
Based on microscopic features: Hymeniform pileipellis, lecythiform cheilocystidia, lacking lecythiform caulocystidia, pointed pileocystidia, smooth brown spores with germ pore, 2-spored basidia.

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= Observer’s choice
= Current consensus


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