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Calocybe ionides

[ Basidiomycota > Agaricales > Lyophyllaceae > Calocybe . . . ]

by Michael Kuo

Here is a beautifully dusky purple, hardwood-loving mushroom, originally described from Europe but also found across North America. The gills are white, which helps to separate Calocybe ionides from Calocybe onychina, which features yellow gills and appears under conifers.

The odor of Calocybe ionides is strongly mealy, according to European literature—but North American collections appear to vary. Alexander Smith (1941, 1944) thought that the mealy odor was not typical for North American collections, and named a variety, Tricholoma ionides farinaceum, to account for mealy collections.

Rugosomyces ionides and Tricholoma ionides are synonyms.

Thanks to Ron Kerner for collecting, documenting, and preserving Calocybe ionides for study; his collection is deposited in The Herbarium of Michael Kuo.


Ecology: Probably saprobic; growing alone, scattered, or gregariously under hardwoods; summer and fall; originally described from France; widespread in Europe; apparently widely distributed in North America. The illustrated and described collection is from Indiana.

Cap: 2–6 cm; broadly convex becoming broadly bell-shaped or nearly flat; dry; very finely scurfy, or more or less bald; purple to brownish purple or brownish lilac.

Gills: Broadly attached to the stem or attached by means of a notch; close or crowded; short-gills frequent; white to cream colored.

Stem: 3–7 cm long; up to 1 cm wide; more or less equal; dry; fairly bald; purple to lilac; basal mycelium white.

Flesh: Whitish; not changing when sliced.

Odor & Taste: Mealy, or not distinctive.

Chemical Reactions: KOH gray on cap surface.

Spore Print: White.

Microscopic Features: Spores 4.5–5 x 2.5–3 µm; ellipsoid; smooth; hyaline in KOH; inamyloid. Basidia 18–25 x 4–5 µm; 4-sterigmate. Hymenial cystidia not found. Lamellar trama subparallel. Pileipellis a trichoderm; hyaline in KOH; terminal cells cylindric with rounded or subclavate apices, 5–10 µm wide. Clamp connections present.

REFERENCES: (J. B. F. Bulliard, 1792) M. A. Donk, 1962. (Smith, 1941; Smith, 1944; Singer, 1978; Moser, 1983; Breitenbach & Kränzlin, 1991; Nonis, 2007; Buczacki et al., 2013; Hofstetter et al., 2014; Bellanger et al., 2015; Gminder & Böhning, 2017; Kalamees, 2018; Læssøe & Petersen, 2019; Kibby, 2020.) Herb. Kuo 05232201.

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Calocybe ionides

Calocybe ionides

Calocybe ionides

Calocybe ionides

Calocybe ionides

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Kuo, M. (2022, August). Calocybe ionides. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: