Covers mushrooms and other non-lichenized fungi that form multicellular fruiting bodies large enough to be seen with the unaided eye.

Browse by scientific name:

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Scientific names beginning with A:
Abortiporus biennisblushing rosette
Description: Abortiporus biennis sometimes forms single or rosette-like clusters of caps, often on a stem, but just as frequently forms distorted fruitbodies with pores on the upper surface. When caps are present, they are flat to funnel-shaped, and pale pinkish to reddish brown, with a paler, feathery or wavy margin. The pores are pinkish white to pink-buff, as is the stem.
Habitat: Woodlands
Substrate: stumps or on ground, often in grass
Agaricus albolutescensamber-staining agaricus
Habitat: Oak
Spores: late fall through early spring
Agaricus altipestall stem agaricus
Agaricus arvensishorse agaricus, horse mushroom, prairie mushroom
Description: Gives off a smell of aniseed or almonds when young. Flesh is white to cream but bruises yellow. Cap is smooth to slightly scaly while the stem is smooth with a ring. Gills start out grayish-pink but become chocolate-brown.
Habitat: grasslands and pastures
Agaricus augustusgiant agaric, horse agaric, prince agaricus, the prince
Habitat: Found in particularly in well watered areas under cedars and in disturbed areas, such as campgrounds or along trails or roads.
Agaricus bernardiisalt-loving agaricus, salt-loving mushroom
Description: Stout and white to being with but usually develops grayish cracks or scales on cap. Gills begin pink and turn chocolate-brown. Stipe has an upturned ring and a sock-like base. Flesh turns reddish brown when cut and may develop a fishy or briny smell.
Habitat: grasslands, roadsides, seashores, and road-salt runoff areas
Agaricus bisporuschampignon, button mushroom, commercial mushroom, cultivated mushroom
Description: Generally brown cap with flat feathery scales. Gills begin as pink but turn chocolate-brown. Stem is white and smooth with a slight ring. Flesh may turn pink when cut.
Habitat: parks, gardens, roadsides.
Agaricus bitorquisbanded agaric, spring agaric, urban agaric, pavement mushroom, sidewalk mushroom, tork
Agaricus buckmacadooi
Description: Usually large size up to 7" cap diameter and 8" tall, very dark brown appressed fibrils / fine scales on the cap surface, flesh of stem may become slightly yellowish in lower part near base, a rubbery, thick-margined ring that is pendant and intermediate, phenolic odor, no staining, and yellow KOH reaction.
Distribution: Recorded in the Puget Sound area and Olympic Peninsula. Pacific Coast of North America, in Washington and California.
Substrate: Soil.
Agaricus campestrismeadow agaricus, pink bottom, champignon, common field mushroom, hot-bed mushroom, meadow mushroom
Description: The popular edible meadow mushroom, as both its scientific and common names suggest, is usually found in fields or pastures (campestris means growing in a field in Latin), especially those rich in manure. The largest fruitings tend to occur when warm and wet weather coincide. It is a stocky, medium-sized, clean white mushroom with bright pink gills when young (another common name is pink bottom); however, as it ages it tends to become brown overall with dark chocolate gills. The cap may be somewhat fibrillose to scaly and, typically, the cuticle extends past the margin, like an overhanging table-cloth. The ring usually is thin and not persistent, and the base of the stipe often is tapered. It occurs nearly worldwide.
Distribution: Worldwide
Habitat: Found in fields or pastures, especially those rich in manure
Agaricus diminutivusdiminutive agaricus
Agaricus hondensisfelt-ringed agaricus, felt-ringed mushroom
Description: Agaricus hondensis is a medium to large toxic species, with an often pink-tinged, fibrillose cap that darkens with age, solid flesh, smooth stipe, and a large thick (“felty”) ring. The gills are grayish to pale pinkish when young, and the stipe base usually bruises light chrome yellow and exhibits a phenolic odor when the flesh is crushed.
Habitat: Occurs primarily in forests, seems to be restricted to the Pacific Coast, and is more common in California than it is in the PNW.
Agaricus inapertusmountain gastroid agaricus
Agaricus micromegethusanise agaricus
Agaricus moelleri
Description: Agaricus moelleri, usually known as A. praeclaresquamosus (Freeman), is another phenol-smelling, toxic species and is the most common of this group in the PNW. It is a medium to medium-large species with a marshmallow-shaped cap and pallid gills when young, dark gray-brown fibrillose cap, smooth stipe, and well developed ring. It lacks the pinkish tints and markedly solid flesh of A. hondensis, and the flesh in the extreme base of the stipe stains a brighter yellow when cut or crushed.
Agaricus purpurelluspurple agaricus
Agaricus semotuswine agaricus, rosy wood mushroom, yellow-bulbed mushroom
Agaricus silvaticusred-staining agaricus, blushing wood mushroom, forest mushroom, red-staining mushroom, scaly wood mushroom, sylvan mushroom
Agaricus silvicolaforest agaric, sylvan agaric, woodland agaricus, woods agaricus, sylvan mushroom, wood mushroom
Description: The key features of Agaricus silvicola are its medium-large size, overall whitish color, tendency to stain yellow on cap and stipe, pleasant (though sometimes very faint) anise odor, and occurrence in forests (silvicola is Latin for forest-inhabiting). It is probably the most frequently encountered agaricus in our woodlands. The name A. abruptibulbus has been applied to forms with bulbous stipe bases, but variation in stipe shape is so great that use of this name has been largely abandoned.
Distribution: Broad
Habitat: Forests and woodlands
Agaricus subrutilescenswine-colored agaric, wine-colored agaricus, woolly-stemmed agaricus, woolly-stem
Description: Agaricus subrutilescens is a highly esteemed edible mushroom although, like most agaricuses, it is not for everyone. It is a tall statuesque forest-dweller, with a whitish cap overlain with purplish brown fibrillose scales, shaggy white stipe, and persistent, but not especially heavy, skirt-like ring. The flesh is whitish, non-staining, and has a mild odor. The gills are whitish at first, then turn pale pinkish, and finally chocolate-brown. It is not uncommon, but usually does not occur in large numbers. If not restricted to the Pacific Coast, at least it is most common here.
Agaricus xanthodermus
Origin: Native
Agrocybe erebialeather earthscale, dark fieldcap
Agrocybe pediadescommon agrocybe, hemispheric agrocybe, common fieldcap
Agrocybe praecoxspring agrocybe, spring fieldcap
Description: A. praecox is a medium-sized fleshy mushroom that frequently grows in dense groups of single fruitbodies or small clusters. It is very common in newly landscaped areas containing mulch or wood chips and, as its name indicates, appears in spring or early summer (praecox is Latin for early). The cap is pale yellowish brown to buff, smooth, and may have slight veil remnants on its edge when young; in age it often cracks especially when the weather is dry. The stipe is whitish, longitudinally lined, often bears a fragile, disappearing ring, and usually connects to thick white mycelial cords in the soil.
Agrocybe putaminummulch fieldcap
Description: The cap is hemispherical and brown when young, becoming weakly convex, smooth, matt, and pale yellow-brown. The gills are clay-brown. The stem is smooth but grooved toward the top, cap-colored, and slightly swollen toward the base, which arises from white, root-like, mycelial cords.
Habitat: in parks, gardens, and roadsides
Substrate: woodchip mulch
Origin: Introduced
Agrocybe semiorbicularis
Description: Probably better known as Agrocybe pediades, A. semiorbicularis is a small variable mushroom that grows in grass, often in the company of species such as Panaeolus foenisecii. It has a hemispherical, slightly viscid cap that may crack somewhat in age and occasionally bears slight whitish veil remnants. The veil does not form a ring.
Albatrellus avellaneus
Description: There are about 10 species of Albatrellus in our region, including several rare or uncommon ones, and they occur on soil, litter, or wood. They are fleshy, but tough, and produce a single cap and stipe or multiple caps and stipes from a common base. It is medium-sized and several fruit bodies often occur together. The cap is white to yellowish or orange buff, sometimes with pinkish tones on the margin, but yellow and orange colors are more developed with age. The surface becomes fibrillose to scaly, with the scales sometimes slightly brownish. The tubes are decurrent and white to yellow- or orange-stained in age. The stipe is whitish above with brownish tones towards the base, and stains yellow to rusty orange in age. Dried specimens often develop orange and red colors.
Distribution: Albatrellus avellaneus is a coastal species extending from California northward into Canada.
Habitat: Occur on soil, litter, or wood and is associated with western hemlock and Sitka spruce.
Albatrellus caeruleoporusblue-pored polypore
Description: Indigo or gray-blue when young, but quickly turns gray to gray-brown with age. The cap is often irregularly shaped, smooth or slightly scurfy, with an in-rolled margin. The decurrent pores are similarly colored, as is the stem, but the flesh when cut is cream to pale buff.
Habitat: conifer woodlands
Substrate: hemlock
Albatrellus dispansus
Habitat: A. dispansus occurs in montane mixed conifer forests, sometimes associated with woody debris or buried wood.
Albatrellus ellisiiscaly yellow polypore
Albatrellus flettiiblue knight, blue-capped polypore, Flett's polypore
Albatrellus ovinussheep polypore
Description: Cream to buff cap, which becomes finely cracked and grayish brown or olive-green with age. The cap is an irregular funnel shape and the edge remains strongly in-rolled even in age. The minute, decurrent pores are white to pale yellowish when fresh, and bruise lemon-yellow. The stout stem is often positioned off-center and is whitish to cream, as is the cut flesh.
Habitat: Conifer woodlands
Substrate: Seen more often with white spruce
Albatrellus subrubescens
Description: A species of montane pine forests that stains yellow to orange when bruised with age.
Albatrellus syringae
Habitat: Northern forests.
Substrate: Terrestrial, on roots.
Alboleptonia sericella
var. lutescens – little white leptonia, cream pinkgill
Aleuria aurantiagreat orange elf-cup, orange fairy-cup, orange peel fungus, orange-peel fungus, orange-peel
Description: Aleuria aurantia does indeed look like orange peels turned inside-out and scattered by a passing hiker or motorist. The inner fertile surface is a brilliant deep orange, the outer surface paler with a somewhat dandruffy texture. The spores are ellipsoid, 13--24 x 7.5--10 µm, and covered by a network of ridges. A. aurantia is very common in the fall, and is especially abundant along gravelly forest roads, in campgrounds, and at trailhead parking areas. It is one of several ascomycetes that will discharge many spores simultaneously when disturbed, producing a visible smoke-like cloud. Sometimes this can be induced by breathing on the cups, at other times it will occur on its own when the fruitbody is removed from its collecting container.
Distribution: A. aurantia is widespread in the Northern Hemisphere.
Habitat: grassy areas on disturbed soil, in gardens, and along roadsides
Substrate: On ground, in groups or clusters.
Spores: Summer and fall
Aleurodiscus amorphusorange discus
Description: The Orange Discus takes its name from its disc-shaped fruitbodies that often remain separate, but sometimes coalesce in twos and threes. The surface is smooth, finely granular, and pinkish orange, becoming duller with age or in dry weather. The margins are distinct, often upturned, finely woolly, and whitish.
Habitat: Woodland
Substrate: dead, attached branches of firs and spruce
Aleurodiscus farlowii
Distribution: Northern North America.
Habitat: On recently-dead twigs of living conifers. Recorded on Abies grandis, Pseudotsuga menziesii, and Tsuga canadensis.
Alloclavaria purpureapurple club coral, purple coral
Description: Smooth to wrinkled, tubular or slightly flattened, unbranched fruit bodies with pointed tips. They normally grow gregariously in clusters or dense troops. They are typically deep or dull purple, fading to purplish gray or brown.
Alpova diplophloeus Groupred gravel
Description: Alpova diplophloeus is essentially a small version of a rhizopogon, differing from them by its gelatinous gleba. Its well-developed peridium is light pinkish at first but soon darkens to brown or reddish brown (or stains those colors). The gleba is viscid-gelatinous and pale yellow to olive when young, and soon becomes orange-brown to reddish brown and marbled by white veins that divide it into chambers. At maturity the smooth, thin-walled, elongate, and colorless to pale brownish spores are borne in a jelly-like matrix.
Amanita apricaJan's yellow friend
Description: A. aprica has a bright yellow to yellow-orange or orange cap decorated with remnants of the thin, frosty whitish universal veil, either as warts or larger patches. In dry weather, these patches present a sense of butter being spread too thinly over a slice of toast. The gills are whitish and the stipe is equal or somewhat enlarged at the base and colored like the gills. The volva is pressed tightly to the stipe base, usually forming zones, and sometimes has a free margin. The partial veil often leaves a whitish, rather fragile, skirt-like ring that may disappear with age.
Habitat: Locally abundant in mixed conifer forests, particularly with Douglas-fir and occasionally occurs with conifers in urban areas.
Amanita augustayellow-veiled amanita, western yellow-veil
Amanita calyptrodermaBallen's American Caesar, fall coccora
Description: Completely enveloped in a thickish, white, cocoon-like veil when immature. hen expanded, the remains persist as large, irregular pieces on the cap surface, which is smooth and orange-brown to golden-brown or, in the spring-fruiting form, pale yellowish. The fills are white and the stem is white to pale yellowish with a membranous ring and a large, sack-like volva at the base.
Habitat: Woodlands
Substrate: firs, tan oak, and madrone
Amanita constrictaconstricted grisette
Description: Amanita constricta, described from California, is a member of the A. vaginata group. In the vaginatas, the cap varies from white to various shades of brown and gray to, occasionally, brighter colors such as salmon-orange. Usually the edge of the cap bears long deep striations, and the center may bear a membranous patch. The universal veil also forms a slender sac-like, often reddish-stained, volva around the base of the stipe. The vaginatas lack a partial veil, so there is no ring, and usually have equal, rather than bulbous, stipes. The gills are white but may be grayish, or with edges that are grayish or more darkly colored. The spores are non-amyloid.
Amanita farinosapowder-cap amanita
Amanita fulvaTawny grisette
Description: Cap is conical to convex at first, becoming umbonate. The surface is smooth, orange-brown to warm brown, with a striate margin. The fills are white. The white stem does not have a ring, but does have a large, sack-like volva at the base, which is white stained rusty brown.
Habitat: Northern forests. Woodlands of Europe, North Africa, and western Asia.
Substrate: Soil.
Amanita gemmata
Spores: Late spring or early summer
Amanita muscariafly agaric, fly amanita
Description: With its bright red cap and white “polka dots,” the typical Amanita muscaria no doubt is the most widely recognized mushroom in the world. However, it is highly variable and different forms have received names that have never quite caught on. These are based primarily on two variables---first, the color of the cap, which ranges from white to yellows and oranges, to deep red and even brown, and second, whether the universal veil is white or yellowish. Different combinations of these two features have produced a number of forms that usually are referred to as varieties. We have illustrated three color forms that occur in the PNW---var. flavivolvata Singer, the commonest one in natural habitats, with red cap and yellowish veil remnants; a paler form common with planted birches and under spruce and pine, with orange cap and white veil remnants; and a rather uncommon one, with white cap and veil remnants. A. m. var. muscaria, with red cap and pure white veil remnants, has been reported from Alaska, but not from more southerly portions of the PNW.
Distribution: Broad
Habitat: Woodland
Substrate: Birch and conifers
Amanita novinuptablusher
Amanita ocreatadeath angel, destroying angel
Amanita pachycoleawestern grisette
Description: A very large species in the vaginata group, can be one of the more spectacular amanitas in the PNW. Its cap is large, brown to very dark brown, sometimes paler near the margin, and always with long striations at the margin. The gills are white with distinct gray to brown edges, and develop orange-brown stains in age. The stipe is long and thick, with a white to brownish fibrillose-scaly surface. The base is surrounded by a large, thick, felty, volva, that is white at first but soon develops rust to brown or yellow colors, and in age can be entirely rust-colored. There is no ring.
Amanita pantherinapanthercap
Description: Like clock-work in late winter to early spring, an amanita in the Amanita pantherina complex appears, especially in urban areas. Other members of this group fruit through summer and fall in a variety of habitats. They come in a variety of color forms, from pale yellowish tan ones that are similar to A. gemmata to dark brown ones that are more like classical European A. pantherina. The mushrooms are medium-sized or larger, the cap has striations on the margin, and the universal veil leaves conspicuous whitish warts and patches on the cap and a close-fitting volva with a distinct free rim (like slightly rolling back the top of a sock) around the bulbous stipe base. The gills are white and closely spaced, and the partial veil is white and leaves a skirt-like ring on the stipe. Here, again, applying a European name to a western North American mushroom might be incorrect. Our mushrooms may well not be “real” A. pantherina.
Distribution: Broad
Habitat: woodlands, rarely in pastures
Substrate: broadleaf trees
Spores: late winter to early spring
Amanita phalloidesdeath-cap, deathcap
Description: Fleshy medium-sized to large fruitbody, non-striate cap margin, white gills that may be slightly attached or free, a membranous outer veil that leaves a sac-like volva on the enlarged stipe base and sometimes a patch on the cap, and a partial veil that typically forms a ring that often disappears in age. It has white amyloid spores.
Habitat: woodland
Substrate: broadleaf trees
Amanita porphyriabooted amanita, gray-veil amanita, grey veiled amanita, purple brown amanita, purplish amanita
Habitat: Conifer forests
Amanita rubescensthe blusher
Description: Hemispherical cap that becomes flat to broadly umbonate. The surface is smooth but scattered with small patches of grayish veil remains, brown, paler toward the margin, bruising or aging pinkish. The gills are white. The stem is white at first, bruising or aging pinkish, scaly below the fragile ring, with a scurfy, bulbous base.
Habitat: woodlands
Substrate: broadleaf trees and conifers
Amanita silvicolawestern woodland amanita
Description: Amanita silvicola is a small to medium-sized species with a rather short, stout stipe in relation to the cap diameter, and A. smithiana, is a usually larger species with a rather long rooting stipe that tapers upward from a spindle-shaped base. A. silvicola usually pushes up the litter or soil from a deep-seated, club-shaped or rimmed stipe base. The outer veil covers the cap and leaves a slight rim of tissue around the stipe base. The partial veil also is soft and fragile and leaves a floccose zone on the upper stipe when the cap expands; typically the surface of the stipe has a soft powdery to cottony covering. The gills are white, close, and have floccose edges.
Habitat: It occurs in conifer and mixed woods and has been reported with a variety of tree hosts including alder.
Substrate: Leaf litter and soil
Amanita smithianaSmith's amanita
Description: Amanita smithiana features a small to medium-sized cap and long rooting stipe that is enlarged at the point where it enters the substrate (either soil or well-rotted wood). The outer veil leaves a coating on the cap, sometimes on the cap edge, and around the enlarged portion of the stipe. The fills are close to crowded, whitish or slightly pinkish. As in A. silvicola the lower stipe is coated with a soft white covering that comes off if you touch it. The partial veil is fragile and leaves a ragged, floccose zone on the upper stipe.
Habitat: Conifer and mixed woods
Substrate: soil or well-rotted wood
Amanita vaginatagrisette
Amaropostia stiptica
Distribution: Northern hemisphere.
Habitat: Temperate forests.
Substrate: Wood.
Ampulloclitocybe avellaneoalbasmoky-brown clitocybe, smoky-brown funnel
Description: Has a cap that is flat, becoming depressed or funnel-shaped with age, with a margin that often remains incurved. The surface is smooth to slightly scaly at the center, dark olive-brown to blackish brown. The fills are white to cream and strongly decurrent. The stem is smooth and pale cap-colored.
Habitat: woodlands
Substrate: conifers or broadleaf trees, especially alder
Ampulloclitocybe clavipesclub-footed clitocybe, club-foot
Description: Has a cap that is umbonate at first, but becomes flat and often depressed to funnel-shaped with age. The surface is smooth and variously reddish brown to olive-brown or gray-brown. The fills are white, cream, or pale yellow and strongly decurrent. The stem is buff to gray-brown, smooth, and typically grossly swollen and darker at the base.
Habitat: wiidkabds
Substrate: conifers, occasionally with broadleaf trees
Anthracobia macrocystis
Description: reddish brown cup with short hairs on the outside; has a single septum with paraphysis that stains green in Melzer\'s reagent.
Anthracobia melalomaburn site ochre cup
Description: fruitbody cup-shaped to concave to flattened, lacking a stalk; upper surface yellowish orange; underside slightly paler, darkly punctate with tufts of appressed brownish hairs.
Substrate: gregarious to massed on burned ground and burned wood
Spores: Spring through early winter
Antrodia heteromorpha
Distribution: Widespread in coniferous forests. Widespread in northern hemisphere.
Habitat: Coniferous forests.
Substrate: Wood
Apiosporina morbosablack knot of cheery
Description: fruitbody 3.5-14 cm long, 1-2.5 cm thick, fusiform to clavate or irregularly elongated; outer surface hard, initially olive-green soon becoming black, carbonaceous, finely roughened, typically furrowed and cracked, stalkless; flesh white when very young, soon black and brittle; perithecia embedded near the surface in a single layer
Substrate: Cherry branches
Armillaria cepistipeshoney mushroom
Armillaria gallicabulbous honey fungus, honey mushroom
Description: A. gallica, probably the most common honey mushroom east of the Rockies, appears to occur only rarely in the PNW. It has a white cobwebby veil, pinkish brown coloration, and bulbous-based stipe, and occurs singly or in groups, not clusters, on or near logs, stumps, or bases of broad-leaved trees such as willow.
Armillaria melleahoney fungus
Description: Grows in dense clusters with convex caps, which become umbonate to slightly depressed. The cap surface is pale yellow-olive to orange-brown, darker at the center, with small, ale to dark brown scales. The gills are decurrent and cream. The stem is cream at the top, becoming dark brown at the base, with a conspicuous ring, often edged in deep yellow.
Habitat: woodlands, parklands, and gardens
Substrate: trunks, stumps, or roots
Armillaria nabsnonahoney mushroom
Description: A. nabsnona was named only in 1996, and so is not widely recognized by mushroom-hunters; thus, it is probably more common than we think. It has a reddish brown smooth cap, stipe that is pale in the upper portion and gradually darkens downward, and grows singly or in groups, but not clusters, in fall or spring on the wood of broad-leaved trees, especially alder. It is thought to be restricted to the Pacific Coast and little is known about its edibility.
Armillaria ostoyaedark honey fungus, honey mushroom
Description: A. ostoyae probably is our most common honey mushroom. It usually grows in clusters, mostly on conifers, but also on broad-leaved trees and shrubs such as willow and salmonberry; both the clusters and the individual mushrooms can be quite large. The caps are brown and usually covered with dark scales, a fairly well defined brownish ring is present on most fuitbodies, and the stipes often taper to pointed bases where they fuse in clusters. At other times, the bases may be somewhat enlarged.
Habitat: Under conifers
Armillaria sinapinahoney mushroom
Arrhenia auriscalpium
Habitat: Alpine at high elevations; arctic near sea-level.
Substrate: Soil near minute mosses or the white worm lichen.
Arrhenia chlorocyaneaverdigris navel
Arrhenia lobata
Description: Arrhenia lobata is a moss-associated species often found in fens, along streams, or in association with melting snow.
Habitat: fens, along streams, or in association with melting snow
Substrate: moss
Arrhenia retirugasmall moss oysterling
Description: Arrhenia in the traditional sense includes small, thin, pliable-fleshed mushrooms that are spoon-, petal- or cup shaped, often lobed, and without a stipe or with a lateral one. The fertile surface is smooth, or bears anastomosing veins or blunt gills. They occur on soil or in association with mosses and often can hardly be seen among the mosses when dried. It is widely distributed and can be found in both urban and forested areas.
Habitat: damp woodlands, old lawns, and grasslands
Substrate: moss
Artomyces piperatus
Distribution: North America; may be global.
Habitat: Coniferous forests.
Substrate: Conifer wood.
Ascobolus carbonariusburn site shield cup
Description: Fruitbody 3-6 mm wide, rounded and cup-shaped when young, becoming shallowly cup-shaped when mature, stalkless; inner surface greenish at first, soon becoming brown and finally purple-brown, conspicuously dotted by the ends of protruding asci; outer surface coarsely scurfy, yellowish green at first, soon becoming dark brown.
Substrate: Burned ground
Spores: Spring, summer, and fall
Ascocoryne cylichniumlarge purple jellydisc
Description: Produces fruitbodies in dense clusters or troops. Individual fruitbodies start as pale reddish purple to lilac-purple, firmly gelatinous blobs, which gradually become button-like with age. When mature, they are generally this and disc-shaped, often rather pleated and wavy, and attached to wood at the base or by an abbreviated stem.
Habitat: woodlands
Substrate: rotten stumps, fallen logs, and branches
Spores: Late summer and fall
Ascocoryne sarcoidespurple jelly-drops
Asterophora lycoperdoidespowdery piggyback, powder-cap, star-bearing powdercap
Asterophora parasiticasilky piggyback
Description: Both Asterophora lycoperdoides and A. parasitica infect russulas and lacteriuses. The fruitbodies are relatively small, with a cap and stipe, either with distinct gills or thick, distant, and reduced ones. While both species are capable of producing basidiospores, they are noted for their production of asexual spores (chlamydospores). A. parasitica has a more conic, whitish, brownish, grayish or faintly lilac cap that forms large, smooth, elliptical chlamydospores on the gills.
Habitat: Woodlands
Substrate: Old fungal fruitbodies of russulas and lacterius
Astraeus hygrometricusbarometer earthstar, hygroscopic earthstar, water-measure earthstar
Description: Produces fruitbodies that are spherical at first. At maturity the thick outer skin splits and when damp peels back to form 6-12 rays or arms, revealing the puffball-like spore sack at the center. The rays are strongly hygroscopic and in dry weather curl back over the spore sack.
Habitat: woodlands
Substrate: on the ground
Astraeus pteridisbracken earthstar, giant hygroscopic earthstar
Habitat: roads, railroad tracks, in waste places, old fields, etc.
Atheniella aurantiidiscacandy-corn mycena
Distribution: Coniferous forests in western North America.
Habitat: Coniferous forests with Pseudotsuga, Tsuga and Pinus.
Substrate: Soil.
Auricularia auriculajelly ear, brown ear fungus, tree-ear, wood-ear
Auriscalpium vulgareear-pick fungus, ear-spoon fungus, pinecone mushroom, pinecone tooth
Description: Auriscalpium vulgare is an unmistakable, but usually inconspicuous, fungus. It is small, dark brown, hairy, and the stipe is lateral. Current evidence suggests it is related to the gilled fungus Lentinellus, the coralloid Clavicorona, the poroid Albatrellus, and other relatives of the russulas, including the fellow spine-fungus, Hericium. The species epithet, “vulgare,” means common, and attests to the wide distribution of the fungus in much of North America, Europe, and temperate Asia.
Habitat: Auriscalpium vulgare is found primarily on (often buried) Douglas-fir cones in the PNW. Elsewhere it can often be found on the cones of pine or occasionally spruce.
Substrate: Fallen or buried cones