Mycena filopes (Bull.) P. Kumm.

Führ. Pilzk.: 110 (1871).

A. Aronsen
Vestfold, Nøtterøy, Torød 5 Sept. 2004

Solitary or in small groups in mossy lawns, under conifers as well as deciduous trees, on vegetable debris, decaying wood, not infrequently also on moss-covered tree trunks. Summer to autumn. Common. Widely distributed in Norway.

Pileus 5-20 mm across, conical to campanulate, often shallowly umbonate, translucent-striate, shallowly sulcate, pruinose, glabrescent, finely innate-fibrillose, with the fibrils gradually splitting, giving the surface a rimose aspect much in the manner of some species of Inocybe, and imparting a silvery lustre to the pileus when drying out, hygrophanous, very pale to almost white, greyish, grey-brown to very dark brown, at the centre darker, paler to almost whitish towards the margin. Lamellae 16-23 reaching the stipe, ascending, narrowly adnate, rarely decurrent with a small tooth, whitish to pale grey or with a brownish tinge, as a rule not turning pinkish. Stipe 40-155 x 0.5-2 mm, hollow, equal, straight or somewhat curved, terete, fairly firm, at first entirely pruinose or minutely puberulous, glabrescent for the greater part, pale to fairly dark grey-brown, paler to almost white at the apex, the base covered with long, coarse, flexuous, whitish fibrils. Odour indistinctive when fresh, of iodoform on drying out. Taste mild.

Basidia 20-28 x 8-12 µm, clavate, mostly 2-spored, but also less frequently 4-spored. Spores 9-11.5 x 5.5-6.5 µm (from 2-spored basidia), Q 1.6-1.8, Qav~1.7, or 8-9 x 5.5-6.5 µm (from 4-spored basidia), pip-shaped, smooth, amyloid. Cheilocystidia 12-30 x 7-18 µm, forming a sterile band, sessile (often the majority) to stipitate, ellipsoid, obovoid, obpyriform, clavate, almost spheropedunculate to somewhat irregularly shaped, covered with fairly few simple to somewhat branched cylindrical excrescences 0.5-20 x 0.5-1.5 µm. Pleurocystidia absent or rare, similar. Hyphae of the pileipellis 1.5-4 µm wide, densely covered with warts or short cylindrical excrescences 0.5-3 x 0.5 µm, more or less forming dense, corraloid masses. Hyphae of the cortical layer of the stipe 2-4 µm wide,diverticulate, excrescences 0.5-3.5 x 0.5 µm. Caulocystidia (terminal cells), abundant in the apical part of the stipe, 5-12 µm wide, clavate to subglobose, more or less curved outwards, covered with warts. Clamp connections present in all tissues both in the 2-spored as well as in the 4-spored form.

Mycena filopes is one of several greyish to grey brown Mycenas with no good characters to separate them from other similar looking species. It can be particularly difficult distinguish from M. metata. They can be told apart as follows (taken from Maas Geesteranus 1992):

Mycena filopes: a) Pileus surface giving the impression of being rimose, with the innate fibrils splitting much in the way of the superficial fibrils of the pileus of some Inocybe, and b) imparting a silvery lustre on drying out, c) pileus not becoming tinged with pink, d) lamellae not or only rarely turning slightly pinkish, e) sessile cheilocystidia often more frequent than the stipitate ones, f) stipitate cheilocystidia up to 30 µm long, g) terminal cells of the stipe cortex always present, numerous and easy to find.

Mycena metata: a) Pileus surface either not rimose or without apparent texture, b) without silvery lustre, c) pileus and / or lamellae usually becoming tinged with pink, d) stipitate cheilocystidia often more frequent than the sessile ones, e) stipitate cheilocystidia often greatly varying in size and the bigger ones usually more voluminous than their counterparts in M. filopes, reaching more than 70 µm in length, f) terminal cells of the stipe cortex absent or, if present, rare and mostly hard to find.

The smell of iodoform is best experienced when the fungus has been kept in a closed box for a while.

Another species that could be mistaken for M. filopes in the fiels is M. vitilis. The two species can occur in the same habitats and sometimes they look quite similar. The latter, however, has completely different cheilocystidia and a more cartilaginous stipe.

Microphotos of the cheilocystidia.

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Go to key to sect. Filipedes.

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