[ Basidiomycota > Agaricales > Hygrophoraceae > Gliophorus . . . ]
by Michael Kuo
Here is an odd waxy cap, characterized by its glutinous cap and stem and its grayish brown to nearly black colors. It is closely related to Gliophorus psittacinus, the well-known, green-then-yellow "parrot mushroom," with which it shares the slimy surfaces and overall stature. But Gliophorus irrigatus is, well, drab—so drab that it is easily overlooked on the forest floor. It is apparently widely distributed in North America, but not commonly collected.
Hygrophorus irrigatus, Hygrophorus unguinosusus, Hygrocybe irrigata, and Hygrocybe unguinosa are synonyms.
Ecology: Precise ecological role uncertain (see Lodge and collaborators, 2013); growing scattered to gregariously under hardwoods or conifers; early summer through fall (or over winter in warmer climates); apparently widely distributed in North America. The illustrated and described collections are from Illinois.
Cap: 1–4 cm across; convex at first, expanding to broadly convex, with or without a broad central bump; bald; slimy; nearly black when very young, maturing to dark grayish brown; the margin at first pale (almost bluish when fresh), becoming translucently lined with age.
Gills: Broadly attached to the stem, or with a broad tooth that begins to run down the stem; distant or nearly so; nearly whitish when young, but soon pale gray; short-gills present.
Stem: 2–4 cm long; 1–4 mm thick; equal; bald; slimy; colored like the cap, or paler.
Flesh: Grayish; thin.
Odor and Taste: Not distinctive.
Chemical Reactions: KOH negative on cap surface.
Spore Print: White.
Microscopic Features: Spores 5–7 x 3–5 µm; ellipsoid; smooth; not constricted; hyaline in KOH; inamyloid. Basidia 50–60 µm long; 4-sterigmate. Hymenial cystidia not found. Lamellar trama parallel. Pileipellis an ixotrichoderm; brownish in KOH. Clamp connections not found.
REFERENCES: (Persoon, 1801) A. M. Ainsworth & P. M. Kirk, 2013. (Fries, 1821; Saccardo, 1887; Hesler and Smith, 1963; Smith, Smith & Weber, 1979; Phillips, 1991/2005; Roody, 2003; McNeil, 2006; Lodge et al., 2013; Siegel & Schwarz, 2016; Baroni, 2017; Sturgeon, 2018.) Herb. Kuo 06161401, 07011503.
This website contains no information about the edibility or toxicity of mushrooms.