The North American Species of Pholiota

116. Pholiota lucifera (Lasch) Quélet, Champ. Jura & Vosg., p. 249. 1872.

Agaricus lucifera Lasch, Linnaea 3: 408. 1828.
Dryophila lucifera (Lasch) Quélet, Enchir. Fung., p. 68. 1886.

Illustrations: Text figs. 248-250.

Pileus 3-6 cm broad, convex, becoming more or less plane, at length umbonate, yellow, the disc somewhat ferruginous, viscid; with small, ferruginous-fulvous, adpressed, drop-like scales; margin appendiculate from veil remnants. Context whitish to yellowish, or yellow under the cuticle; taste bitter.

Lamellae adnate, yellow then bright rusty or ferruginous, close or crowded, rather narrow, edges at first white-crenulate. Stipe 2-5 cm long, 3-8 mm thick, yellowish above, brownish and fibrillose-squamulose below the peronate-fibrillose fugacious ring, equal, solid.

Spores 6.5-9 x 4.5-5.5 µ, smooth, no germ pore evident; shape in face view ovate to elliptic, in profile obscurely inequilateral to bean-shaped; color rusty cinnamon in KOH, in Melzer's reagent slightly redder, wall thin (-0.25 µ).

Basidia 26-32 x 6-7 µ, 4-spored, narrowly clavate, yellowish in KOH and Melzer's reagent. Pleurocystidia rare and inconspicuous, 27-42 x 5-7 µ clavate-mucronate, (possibly merely basidioles). Cheilocystidia abundant, 28-60 x 5-12 µ elongate-clavate to capitate, rarely somewhat fusoid-ventricose or septate, hyaline thin-walled, smooth, yellowish in Melzer's reagent. Caulocystidia present as a few clavate end-cells arising from surface hyphae over apex.

Gill trama of subparallel-interwoven hyphae 4-15 (20) µ diam., cells often short, thin-walled, yellowish to hyaline in KOH, smooth, content colloidal and ± hyaline in KOH causing hyphae to stand out boldly, in Melzer's reagent the content cinnabar-red to reddish orange; subhymenium of narrow (3-4 µ) subgelatinous closely packed hyphae hyaline in KOH and yellowish in Melzer's reagent. Pileus cutis of subgelatinous mostly ochraceous hyphae (in KOH) 2.5-4 µ broad and more or less radially disposed (not in a compact pellicle), hypodermial region not distinct from context. Context hyphae (in KOH) with colloidal content, scattered hyphal cells with a refractive metallic body (crystal?) resembling the inclusion in typical chrysocystidia (in KOH), hyphal walls thin, smooth and nearly hyaline, in Melzer's reagent the cell content red to orange-red or more ochraceous. Clamp connections present.

Habit, Habitat, and Distribution: On wood and woody debris, Europe, Summer-Fall.

Observations: This species is characterized by the drop-like appressed scales on the pileus, the stipe fibrillose-squamulose below the evanescent ring, and bitter taste. Its spores are distinctly larger than in P. flammans. We have not, as yet, seen any North American collections of P. lucifera. The Melzer's reactions remind one of those obtained from some collections of Macowanites americanus. They are most unusual in Pholiota. The impression one receives from the dried basidiocarps is that they are conspecific with P. muiltifolia, but this is not substantiated by the microscopic features. The iodine reaction of the context hyphae reminds of P. limonella but the larger spores and bitter taste distinguish it immediately. It is the only species we have encountered in which at least some of the cells of the context hyphae have a refractive inclusion resembling that of chrysocystidia.

Material Examined: FRANCE: Josserand, from near Lyon, November 14, 1932 (MICH); SWEDEN: Lundell, August 27, 1946.