Growing solitary to subcespitose on dead
coniferous wood, particularly on much decayed Picea
stumps, but also among tall mosses or Sphagnum
on woody debris. Also found on fallen, buried cones of Picea.
Ocurring in the spring, from ultimo April to the middle
of June; mostly found in May. Found in many of the countries covered, including the UK. Red listed in Belgium. Widespread in southern part of Norway, but not recorded north of Trøndelag. Regular and not uncommon in
Vestfold and Østfold.
mm across, acutely conical to broadly rounded, with age
often becoming plano-convex to applanate, often with an
umbo and recurved margin, translucent-striate and sulcate,
often conspicuously white-pruinose, glabrescent, not lubricous
when wet, almost black-brown when young, then dark sepia
brown, paler with age, the outermost margin paler.
Lamellae 15-30 reaching the stipe,
ascending, narrowly adnate, sometimes becoming veined and
dorsally intervenose, whitish to grey. Stipe
30-140 x 2-3 mm, hollow, equal, terete, smooth, pruinose,
glabrescent except for the apex, apically dark steel blue
in very young specimens, gradually fading, becoming entirely
dark brown or whitish above, brown below, the base covered
with coarse, whitish fibrils, not infrequently deeply rooting
in decayed wood. Odour pronouncedly
nitrous. Taste unpleasant, astringent.
28-51 x 7-12.5 µm, slender-clavate, 2-spored. Spores
9-15(-17.5) x 7-10(-11) μm, Q 1.4-1.7, Qav ≈ 1.5, broadly pip-shaped, smooth,
20-73 x 7-20 μm, forming a sterile band, clavate, lageniform, fusiform or somewhat
irregularly shaped, apically rounded or narrowed into a
simple or furcate neck, or covered with several coarse excrescences 2-20 x 0.5-2 µm; the more intricate excrescences usually situated near the margin of the pileus, where as the cheilocystidia are more smooth in the middle of the lamella.
Pleurocystidia scattered, fusiform.
the pileipellis 2-5 µm wide, slightly gelatinized, covered with simple to branched excrescences 1.5-20 x 1-2.5 µm. Hyphae of
the cortical layer of the stipe 2-5 µm
wide, +/- somewhat gelatinized, covered with cylindrical excrescences 1.5-9 x 1.5-2 µm, terminal cells up to 4.5 µm wide, variously diverticulate. Clamp connections absent.
Microphotos of cheilocystidia close to the margin of pileus
Microphotos of hyhae of the pileipellis
Microphotos of cheilocystidia
Microphotos of hyphae of the pileipellis-1
Microphotos of hyphae of the cortical layer of the stipe
Mycena silvae-nigrae is a member
of the large section Fragilipedes. It is easily recognized as it is a vernal
species, occuring in conifer forests. Furthermore it is
identified on account of the nitrous smell, the 2-spored
basidia, the absence of clamp connections, and the cheilocystidia
mostly with coarse excrescences.
Mycena leptocephala has a more greyish pileus. It is often found in the spring, but is generally
4-spored and clamped, and the hyphae of the cortical layer
of the stipe are smooth, with conspicuously inflated terminal
Mycena plumipes is another vernal and nitrous-smelling
species, growing on fallen, decaying Picea cones.
It is also clampless, but 4-spored; the cheilocystidia are different,
and the hyphae of the pileipellis and the cortical layer
of the stipe are smooth. The terminal cells of the latter
are cylindrical, appearing as caulocystidia.
Mycena stipata is also dark brown and with
a nitrous odour and occurs on coniferous wood. It is distinguished
on account of 4-spored basidia, presence of clamp connections,
smaller spores, absence of pleurocystidia, and both hyphae of pileipellis
and stipitipellis are +/- smooth and embedded
in gelatinous matter. In wet condition it has a more lubricous
pileus and stipe.