The North American Species of Pholiota
148. Pholiota carbonaria A. H. Smith, Mycologia 36: 253. 1944.
Pholiota carbonicola Singer, Agar. Mod. Tax. p. 543. 1963.
Pileus 2-4 cm broad, convex with an incurved margin beautifully appendiculate with remains of the veil, expanding to plane or with slight umbo, rarely the disc slightly depressed, "warm-buff" to "antimony-yellow" young, becoming darker and finally nearly cinnamon-brown in age on the disc, the margin remaining paler, surface viscid, covered at first by concentric rows of small nearly "hazel" or "ferruginous" fibrillose scales, more or less glabrescent. Context watery brown, thick in the disc; odor and taste not distinctive.
Lamellae bluntly adnate, narrow, crowded, equal, white to grayish when young, becoming nearly snuff-brown at maturity, edges slightly crenulate.
Stipe 3-6 cm long, 4-6 mm thick, equal, somewhat compressed or terete, fibrous, dingy watery yellowish within, solid, becoming tubular at least in apical region, surface covered by small "hazel" to "ferruginous" fibrillose squamules from the remains of the veil, squamules often recurved, ground yellowish but darkening slightly below, apex pruinose.
Spores (5) 6-7 (8) x 3.5-4 (4.5) µ, smooth, apical pore present but apex not truncate; shape in face view elliptic to ovate, in profile subelliptic to obscurely inequilateral; color tawny in H2O mounts fresh, revived in KOH cinnamon-brown, in Melzer's reagent paler cinnamon; wall about 0.3 µ thick.
Basidia 18-23 x 6-7 µ, 4-spored, clavate, yellowish to hyaline in KOH or Melzer's reagent. Pleurocystidia abundant, 50-88 x 9-14 µ, fusoid ventricose with obtuse or rarely subcapitate apices, when fresh some with adhering amorphous material around the apex, smooth in KOH, hyaline or with yellowish content in the neck or throughout, thin-walled, rarely the apex forked (in Smith 54261); cheilocystidia abundant, 25-47 x 7-13 µ, clavate to subfusoid or obscurely fusoid ventricose, walls ochraceous in KOH, smooth or some slightly incrusted. Caulocystidia none.
Gill trama hyaline, interwoven, floccose, some sections showing a slight gelatinization of the subhymenium. Pileus trama floccose-interwoven and yellowish hyaline in KOH. Hypodermium rusty brown. Cuticle gelatinous, hyaline to yellowish, of interwoven hyphae 2-3.5 µ in diameter. Clamp connections present. All hyphae inamyloid.
Habit, Habitat, and Distribution: On burned soil and exposed roots, rarely on manure-heaps, Washington, Oregon, California, and Idaho, summer, autumn, and early winter.
Observations: The distinctive mark of this species is the fiery red or ferruginous veil, which, in age, fades to ochraceous, leaves fibrillose squamules on the stipe, and is appendiculate on the pileus margin. The lamellae are narrow and whitish to grayish when young. A collection from England by Smith (63165, MICH) is close; in it the veil-remnants form orange-tawny squamules on the stipe. Further collections of it might prove it to be a form of P. carbonaria. The name P. carbonicola Singer was based on conversations Singer had with Smith who admitted that he had first intended to publish the species as P. carbonicola. It is doubtful, in a strict interpretation of the International Rules, if the change to carbonicola from carbonaria, as finally published by Singer, is now justifiable. At any rate, Peck's species epithet highlandensis is available for the fungus commonly known in the past as Flammula carbonaria.
Material Examined: CALIFORNIA: White 575 (MICH); Smith 3638, 3773, 9003, 9386, 9446, 9500, (type). IDAHO: Smith 44428, 44458, 44906, 45336, 45485, 46021, 46022, 53888, 54261, 55314, 68196; OREGON: Sipe 918 (MICH); Smith 3406, 3418, 3616, 9342; WASHINGTON: Smith 17998, 18019, 48364, 48449. Stuntz and Isaacs (Stuntz 1587).