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Mycena haematopus var. cuspidata
by Michael Kuo
Like the typical variety of Mycena haematopus, Mycena haematopus var. cuspidata is a "bleeding mycena," exuding a dark purplish red juice when the fresh stem is squeezed. Unlike the typical variety, however, var. cuspidata grows on the deadwood of quaking aspen and alder in the Rocky Mountains, has a very (rather than slightly) bitter taste, and features a "cuspidate" (Mycologese for "pointed") cap.
Ecology: Saprobic on the deadwood of quaking aspen and thinleaf alder; causing a white rot; growing in dense clusters (but sometimes growing alone or scattered); late summer, during monsoon season in the Rocky Mountains.
Cap: 1-3 cm across; sharply conic when young, and often retaining a narrowed point into maturity; the margin usually becoming tattered or scalloped with age; dry; finely dusted when young, becoming bald; sometimes shallowly lined or grooved; purplish brown to reddish brown, often fading to pinkish.
Gills: Narrowly attached to the stem; nearly distant; whitish, becoming pinkish to purplish; often stained reddish brown; edges colored like the faces.
Stem: 3-6 cm long; 1-3 mm thick; equal; hollow; smooth or with tiny reddish hairs above; base densely covered with white hairs; purplish, becoming purple-brown; exuding a purplish red juice when crushed or broken.
Flesh: Insubstantial; pallid or colored like the cap; exuding a purplish red juice when crushed or cut.
Odor and Taste: Odor fruity or not distinctive; taste strongly bitter and unpleasant.
Spore Print: White.
Chemical Reactions: KOH yellow on cap surface.
Microscopic Features: Spores 8-13 x 5-7 µ; broadly elliptical; smooth; weakly to moderately amyloid. Cheilocystidia abundant; fusiform, with elongated, subacute apices that are occasionally branched; up to about 75 x 12 µ. Pleurocystidia scattered or frequent; similar to cheilocystidia. Pileipellis a cutis, with the uppermost elements diverticulate.
REFERENCES: Mitchel & Smith, 1978. (Evenson, 1997; Kuo & Methven, 2010.) DBG RMNP 2008-280.
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Cite this page as:
Kuo, M. (2010, December). Mycena haematopus var. cuspidata. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: http://www.mushroomexpert.com/mycena_haematopus_cuspidata.html