When: 2012-04-30

Collection location: Ballarat Botanical Gardens, Ballarat, Victoria, Australia [Click for map]

Who: TimmiT

No specimen available

Under Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla), Bunya Pine (Araucaria bidwillii) and Giant Redwood (Sequoiadendron giganteum)

Species Lists


Proposed Names

-72% (3)
Recognized by sight
72% (5)
Recognized by sight: conical grayish cap, shape of lower stipe, lack of mycorrhizal hosts, something gestalty here… lack of deep striations? Combined with apparent lack of annulus?

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= Observer’s choice
= Current consensus


Add Comment
CSI Mushrooms!
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2012-05-02 09:23:54 PDT (-0700)

Good work, Timm. Looking for clues at the scene of the crime.
Solid data beats speculation every time.

Indeed, phalloides and gloiocephalus can be scarily similar.

I went back
By: TimmiT
2012-05-02 00:46:08 PDT (-0700)

I didn’t finish work early enough yesterday to check on this but managed to go back in my lunch break today. The mushroom was still there and had matured quite a bit. With no annulus and pink gills it was obviously a Volvopluteus. It also had plenty of humus attached to the base, as expected with a saprobe. I will update with photos later.

Thanks for all the discusion. Debbie, there have been sightings of A. phalloides in Ballarat and I hope to see one while I’m here. I can understand how poisonings occur with people picking these. They look very similar when immature.

could be Volvopluteus
By: Alfredo Justo (Fredo)
2012-04-30 10:45:14 PDT (-0700)

It is hard to be confident without seeing the gills and the presence/absence of a ring but this looks more like a Volvopluteus than an Amanita to me.

Microscopical observations (even of an immature specimen) should provide enough data to chose between the two.

If it is a Volvopluteus it could be V. gloiocephalus but considering the geographic origin V. asiaticus is also a possibility.

right as rain.
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2012-04-30 10:27:55 PDT (-0700)

my ignorance of OZ trees is vast, and those are certainly no true pines!

Phalloides has many, many tree hosts, though, from conifers to hardwoods and including eucalyptus, and seems to be continually expanding its tree hosts.
could one of those have been nearby?

Both phalloides and gloiocephalus can have pointed or rounded caps (that darned variability thing), and phalloides caps can get silvery gray when drying out…, and both also have those embedded longitudinal fibrils.

Spore print and annulus check would tell us fer sure, one way or t’other.

Those aren’t
By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2012-04-30 10:13:43 PDT (-0700)
could be either…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2012-04-30 10:01:11 PDT (-0700)

they can look quite similar to each other, esp. when unopened. lack of an annulus for Volvopluteus (the former Volvariella speciosa) would be a good clue, too.

there are certainly MR hosts nearby tho, with that pine and all…

By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2012-04-30 08:06:27 PDT (-0700)

I’m guessing Rod is alluding to the possibility that this might be Volvopluteus, which it looks like to me based on the rather conical cap, grayish-virgate cap surface, and lack of mycorrhizal hosts nearby.

Amanita phalloides?
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2012-04-30 08:04:52 PDT (-0700)

yeah it has UV material on the cap, but the rest of the gestalt is there, including the innate fibrils on the shiny greenish cap.

Typical phalloides transplant location in an exotic tree garden, too.

Did it have a bulb?

I’ll try
By: TimmiT
2012-04-30 06:14:57 PDT (-0700)

to get back there tomorrow and study it further. Hopefully it will survive long enough to mature.

Hi, Tim.
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2012-04-30 05:35:44 PDT (-0700)

It looks like you had an interesting time at the Botanical Garden. I suppose one doesn’t collect there? If you happen to have seen this specimen in an expanded state, I’m wondering if there were white or pink spores.