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Sebacina incrustans

[ Basidiomycota > Sebacinales > Sebacinaceae > Sebacina ... ]

by Michael Kuo

Sebacina incrustans engulfs everything in its path (plant stems, leaves, twigs, whatever) covering surfaces with a thin, waxy, whitish crust. It is a jelly fungus, but its consistency is not particularly jelly-like.

Similar species include Sebacina epigaea, which is whitish-translucent (and, under the microscope, features irregular, star-shaped "resting spores"), and Helvellosebacina concrescens, which is thicker, more globular and lobed, and tends to limit itself to climbing upright plant stems.


Ecology: Mycorrhizal with hardwoods; growing in amorphous masses on the ground, engulfing leaves, twigs, plant stems, and so on; summer and fall, or over winter in warm climates; originally described from Germany; widely distributed in North America from the Great Plains eastward, southward into Mexico, but apparently absent from western North America; also known from Europe, Asia, and Oceania. The illustrated and described collections are from Illinois.

Fruiting Body: A thin crust up to 1 mm thick, spreading in patches up to 8 cm across; surface waxy to the touch, whitish to slightly yellowish or pinkish in places, especially with age; under a hand lens appearing finely fimbriate at the edges; flesh cartilaginous.

Odor: Not distinctive.

Dried Specimens: Dull brownish yellow.

Microscopic Features: Hyphae 2–4 µm wide; smooth; slightly thick-walled; septate; hyaline in KOH; without clamp connections. My collections have been immature, so the remaining microscopic details come from Breitenbach & Kränzlin (1986): Spores 14–18 x 9–10 µm; broadly ellipsoid; smooth; hyaline. Basidia 17–22 x 10–12 µm; 4-sterigmate, with long, fingerlike sterigmata (to 70 µm long); longitudinally septate.

REFERENCES: (Persoon, 1796) L. R. Tulasne & C. Tulasne, 1871. (Coker, 1920; Martin, 1952; Lowy, 1971; Breitenbach & Kränzlin, 1986; Oberwinkler et al., 2014; Læssøe & Petersen, 2019.) Herb. Kuo 08032002, 08092003.

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Sebacina incrustans

Sebacina incrustans

Sebacina incrustans

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Kuo, M. (2020, November). Sebacina incrustans. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: