Major Groups > Gilled Mushrooms > Pale-Spored > Clitocyboid Mushrooms > Clitocybe inversa


Clitocybe inversa

[Basidiomycetes > Agaricales > Tricholomataceae > Clitocybe ...]

by Michael Kuo

Clitocybe inversa is an orangish, sweet-smelling clitocyboid mushroom found under conifers. It is common in the Pacific Northwest and California, but is apparently also occasional throughout northern and montane North America. Aside from the cap color and odor, distinguishing features include the orangish tinge to the gills (which becomes more pronounced with maturity), and microscopic features (see below).

Some mycologists place this species, along with the better known Clitocybe nuda, in the genus Lepista. Kuyper (1995) argues convincingly that several species traditionally separated from Clitocybe inversa on the basis of subtle differences in colors, including Clitocybe flaccida, Clitocybe splendens, and Clitocybe gilva, are merely ecotypes of a single, "morphologically variable taxon." If Kuyper is correct, flaccida is the oldest name in the group and would take precedence.


Ecology: Saprobic; growing scattered or gregariously on conifer litter; fall (over winter in coastal California); reported throughout northern and montane North America, but especially common in the Pacific Northwest and in California.

Cap: 3-11 (-14) cm; convex with an inrolled margin at first, becoming flat or shallowly vase-shaped; dry; fairly smooth; orangish to brick orange or orangish tan.

Gills: Running down the stem; close or crowded; pinkish buff or orangish, developing darker orange or pinkish brown hues with maturity.

Stem: 3-10 cm long; up to 15 mm thick; more or less equal; dry; finely hairy; colored like the cap but paler; with whitish mycelium at the base.

Flesh: Thin; whitish.

Odor and Taste: Odor sweetish ("like frozen orange juice or faintly of Earl Grey tea," according to Gregory [2007]); taste not distinctive.

Chemical Reactions: KOH on cap surface yellow.

Spore Print: Whitish to yellowish.

Microscopic Details: Spores 4-5 x 3.5-4 µ; subglobose to broadly elliptical; finely warty; inamyloid. Cystidia absent. Clamp connections present.

REFERENCES: (Scopoli, 1772) Quelet, 1872. (Saccardo, 1887; Bigelow & Smith, 1969; Smith, Smith & Weber, 1979; Bigelow, 1985; Arora, 1986; Kuyper, 1995; Gregory, 2007.) Herb. Kuo 01130601.

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Clitocybe inversa

Clitocybe inversa

Clitocybe inversa

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Kuo, M. (2008, April). Clitocybe inversa. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: