Mycena meliigena (Berk. & Cooke) Sacc.

Syll. Fung. 5: 302 (1887)

© A. Aronsen 2005

On (usually moss-covered) bark of various living deciduous trees. Autumn to winter. Widespread but apparently not very common. In Norway most records are from southern parts, but recorded north to Nordland.

Pileus 2.5-7(-10) mm across, hemispherical, parabolical to convex, often somewhat flattened or depressed centrally, sulcate, translucent-striate, pruinose, vinaceous red, brownish pink, dark violet, pale brown with a lilaceous tinge, turning more brownish at age. Lamellae 6-14 reaching the stipe, broad, the edge convex, ascending to subhorizontal, adnate, more or less decurrent with a short tooth, at first concolorous with the pileus, pallescent, turning whitish, finally more or less sepia grey-brown, the edge paler. Stipe 4-20 x 0.2-1 mm, curved, pruinose to white-floccose, glabrescent, becoming shiny, more or less concolorous with the pileus, the base densely covered with long, white fibrils. Odour and taste insignificant.

Basidia 26-36 x 10.5-13.5 µm, clavate, 4-spored or 2-spored. Spores from 4-spored basidia 8-11 x 8-10 µm, from 2-spored basidia up to 14.5 µm, Q 1.0-1.3, Qav ~ 1.1, globose to subglobose, amyloid. Cheilocystidia 15-40 x 6-14 µm, occurring mixed with basidia, clavates, covered with unevenly spaced, simple to branched, curved to tortuous excrescences up to 1-10 x 0.5-1.5 µm. Pleurocystidia absent. Lamellar trama dextrinoid, vinescent in Melzer’s reagent. Hyphae of the pileipellis 2.5-9 µm wide, covered with warts or cylindrical excrescences 1.5-12 x 1-1.5 µm. Hyphae of the cortical layer of the stipe 1-4 µm wide, smooth to diverticulate, excrescences 1-9 x 1-1.5 µm, the terminal cells (caulocystidia) 30- 80 µm long, usually slender, clavate, diverticulate. Clamps present in 4-spored form, absent in 2-spored form.

M. meliigena and Mycena pseudocorticola can often be found growing together on the same trunk. M. pseudocorticola seems to be more common. Young, fresh specimens of the two species are not difficult to separate, but with age they both turn more brownish and can be hard to identify macroscopically. Microscopically they are very similar too. Maas Geesteranus (1982a) pointed at a quite reliable character to tell them apart in the shape and size of the terminal cells of the stipe cortex. In M. pseudocorticola these cells are stubby, not longer than 37 µm, whereas much longer, more slender, cells are by far the more common kind in M. meliigena.

The brown colours in older specimens may cause confusion with M. supina, but that species have cheilocystidia with only short excrescences and smaller spores. M. juniperina has a pale yellowish brown pileus and grows on Juniperus communis.

Courtecuisse (1986) introduced a white form of M. meliigena (f. alba).

Go to key to sect. Supinae.


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© Arne Aronsen 2002-2023