Major Groups > Gilled Mushrooms > Pink-Spored > Volvariella and Volvopluteus > Volvariella nigrodisca


Volvariella nigrodisca

[ Basidiomycota > Agaricales > Pluteaceae > Volvariella . . . ]

by Michael Kuo

Easily overlooked, this little Volvariella species is fragile and hard to see against the forest floor. Its thin little cap is grayish, with a darker center, and the base of its stem is encased in a small, whitish, sack-like volva. It differs from species like Volvariella pusilla in its darker colors, and from Volvariella taylorii in its slighter stature and lined cap margin. Like other species in the genus it features brownish pink mature gills that are free from the stem, and a corresponding brownish pink spore print.

Sá and Wartchow (2016) describe a very similar species, Volvariella leucocalix, from Brazil; its differences include smaller spores, slightly different cap colors, smaller cystidia, and ascending pileipellis elements. The species has not been subjected to DNA study.


Ecology: Apparently saprobic; growing alone or gregariously; usually reported from hardwood forests but occasionally reported in urban settings; summer; distribution uncertain (originally recorded from Michigan; since reported from West Virginia and, here, from Illinois). The illustrated and described collection is from Illinois.

Cap: 2–3 cm across; broadly convex or nearly flat; dry; bald; medium gray overall, with a darker gray center; the margin finely lined for about 2 mm.

Gills: Free from the stem; close; short-gills frequent; brownish pink at maturity.

Stem: 4–6 cm long; 2–3 mm thick; fragile; more or less equal, above a very slight basal bulb; dry; bald; white; without a ring; the base encased in a small, white, flaring volva that discolors brownish.

Flesh: Thin; white; not changing when sliced.

Odor and Taste: Slightly foul.

Spore Print: Brownish pink.

Microscopic Features: Spores 5–7 (–8) x 4–5 µm; ellipsoid; thick-walled; smooth; hyaline in KOH. Cheilocystidia and pleurocystidia to about 60 x 15 µm; lageniform; smooth; hyaline in KOH. Pileipellis a cutis of elements 10–25 µm wide, smooth, brownish in KOH, septate; terminal cells cylindric with rounded apices, clavate, or inflated-fusiform, up to 35 µm wide. Clamp connections not found.

REFERENCES: Shaffer, 1963. (Sá & Wartchow, 2016.) Herb. Kuo 07301604.

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Volvariella nigrodisca

Volvariella nigrodisca

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Kuo, M. (2018, December). Volvariella nigrodisca. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: