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Hygrocybe coccinea

[ Basidiomycota > Agaricales > Hygrophoraceae > Hygrocybe . . . ]

by Michael Kuo

Hygrocybe coccinea is a medium-sized waxy cap that can be recognized by its scarlet colors, convex cap, broadly attached gills, and the fact that stem does not usually split and become finely "stringy." It is very similar to Hygrocybe punicea, but that species is slightly larger, and features narrowly attached, "notched" gills, along with a stem that becomes stringy.

Hygrophorus coccineus is a synonym.


Ecology: Precise ecological role uncertain (see Lodge and collaborators, 2013); growing scattered or gregariously in a variety of woodland ecosystems; summer and fall, or over winter in warmer climates; apparently widely distributed in North America. The illustrated and described collections are from California and Michigan.

Cap: 2-6 cm; convex, becoming broadly convex or broadly bell-shaped; sticky when fresh; bald; crimson red, fading to orangish red.

Gills: Broadly attached to the stem; distant or nearly so; thick and waxy; pinkish orange to orange or dull red.

Stem: 2-6 cm long; up to 1 cm thick; equal, with a slightly tapered base; dry, or a little greasy when fresh; colored like the cap, with a yellowish to orange base.

Flesh: Thin; reddish.

Odor and Taste: Not distinctive.

Spore Print: White.

Microscopic Features: Spores 6-11 x 4-5.5 µ; smooth; more or less ellipsoid, but occasionally constricted at the apicular end; hyaline in KOH; inamyloid. Basidia 4-sterigmate; up to 60 µ long. Hymenial cystidia absent. Lamellar trama parallel. Pileipellis an ixotrichoderm.

REFERENCES: (Schaeffer, 1774) Kummer, 1871. (Fries, 1821; Saccardo, 1887; Kauffman, 1918; Hesler and Smith, 1963; Bird & Grund, 1979; Smith, Smith & Weber, 1979; Largent, 1985; Arora, 1986; Phillips, 1991; Lincoff, 1992; Metzler & Metzler, 1992; Barron, 1999; Boertmann, 2000; McNeil, 2006; Miller & Miller, 2006; Lodge et al., 2013.) Herb. Kuo 09111012, 01141103.

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Hygrocybe coccinea

Hygrocybe coccinea

Hygrocybe coccinea

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Kuo, M. (2014, May). Hygrocybe coccinea. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: