Free Gills (Agaricaceae s.s. and Verrucosporaceae) - click to expand
Genera mentioned: Chlorophyllum, Macrolepiota, Echinoderma,
Cystolepiota, Melanophyllum, Leucocoprinus, Leucoagaricus, Lepiota
Chlorophyllum and Macrolepiota - click to expand
- shaggy parasols, our largest 'Lepiotas', 20cm across or more, with a
brown scaly cap and flesh that stains quickly orange when scratched
(except in Macrolepiota)
- white or green spore print (for one locally rare
- a distinctive look that separates them from the erect
scaled Echinoderma and the not quite as large Leucoagaricus,
and far more common than both lookalikes
- Chlorophyllum includes
one rare, local gastroid mushroom.
Species mentioned: Chlorophyllum molybdites, olivieri,
brunneum, rhacodes (rachodes), agaricoides. Endoptychum agaricoides.
Family Agaricaceae. They have been well studied, and for once it is well known exactly which
Chlorophyllum species occur in the PNW. Macrolepiota is a genus of
similarly large mushrooms that does not occur in the PNW natively, although
there are reports that cultivated Macrolepiota procera has
escaped into the wild near Olympia, WA and can be found here.
- Dangerously poisonous, it is recognized by a green spore print
in age, growth in grasses and gardens, and white areas between the
scales. Young specimens may have white gills and not be identifiable. It is
rare here, being a hot weather species, but it has made it all the way up north
to Washington so far.
Chlorophyllum molybdites © Christian Schwarz
Chlorophyllum rhacodes (rachodes)
- Most easily confused with the poisonous C. molybdites, but this has a
white spore print (as do the rest of the species in this section). When young, the caps of some of these species start out solid dark
brown before they start breaking up into scales (see photo).
Chlorophyllum rhacodes © Steve Trudell
- This species is known for a very abrupt bulb at the bottom of the stem,
otherwise it is similar to the other two.
Chlorophyllum brunneum © Steve Trudell
- This species does not have the prominent white areas between the scales, but
is more of a uniform brown.
Chlorophyllum oolivieri © Steve Trudell
- Formerly Endoptychum agaricoides before it was realized that
gastroid and truffle mushrooms don't usually deserve their own genus but are
inside the genera they evolved from. It is round like a puffball. The
spore mass turns yellowish brown (the DNA and the coloured spore print
suggest a close relationship to C. molybdites), and it has a
rudimentary stem inside, but the gills are not recognizable as such. It has
evolved a strong odor of cabbage (many trufflized species need to evolve
some sort of strong odor to enable them to be found by animals and dug up or
opened). The ITS DNA of this species all over
the world only differs by 1 or 2 bp. We have sequences of this eastern
hemisphere mushroom from as close as New Mexico, so I expect our species is the
Chlorophyllum agaricoides © Steve Trudell
- This species somewhat resembles Chlorophyllum rhacodes with
scant brown scales on the cap (that is otherwise white), but it is
not quite as large and does not stain orange when scratched. It
is rare, with only a few reports of escaped cultivars around Olympia, WA so
Macrolepiota procera © Buck McAdoo
- click to expand
- medium to large species with erect scales on the cap
and staining colours, uncommon to rare.
Species mentioned: Echinoderma asperum, eriophorum,
perplexum, flavidoasperum. Lepiota acutesquamosa, aspera.
Echinoderma asperum (Lepiota aspera/Lepiota acutesquamosa)
is a European species reported from the PNW, but that is not the species we
have. Neither does it appear that our species is the same as the east coast
Echinoderma eriophorum. We have at least 4 undescribed
species in need of names.
Echinoderma sp. 1 - This species, at least the 2 times it was photographed, had a uniformly
cold brown coloured cap, and a stem that was more fibrillose-streaky
than it was scaly, with loose chunks of spines, especially near the
bottom of the stem.. It
is rare, having been found once
in WA, once in Victoria, once on Texada
Island (north of Nanaimo BC) and once in boreal BC. In one BC collection, it was
Echinoderma sp. 1 © Danny Miller and Marty Kranabetter
Echinoderma sp. 4 - Species 4 is much like species 1, with what appears to be a fibrillose
stem (not a scaly stem) but some white areas are showing between the
brown scales. Also rare, it was found once SE of Salem, OR. It may be somewhat of a
sister species of Echinoderma perplexum (differs by about 10%).
Echinoderma sp. 4 © NAMA and the Field Museum of Natural History
Echinoderma sp. 3 - This species has a cold brown cap like sp.1 and a shaggy/scaly stem.
Compared to sp. 1 and 4, it seems to show more white between the cap scales as
it expands, and the stem itself retains more scales. It is
uncommon, having been sequenced
more than a half dozen times in Vancouver BC, at least once in WA and also in
Quebec and Arizona.
Echinoderma sp. 3 © Danny Miller
Echinoderma sp. iNat63939282
- This collection was extremely scaly with a coloured juice on the
young specimens. It superficially resembles Echinoderma sp. 3 in age, and
I am awaiting results to see if it is a distinct species.
Echinoderma sp. iNat 63939282 © Matthew Koons
Echinoderma sp. 2 aff flavidoasperum
- This species has a warm yellow brown cap and a mostly smooth stem.
E. flavidoasperum, from China, from which it differs by 6-7bp and
1-2 indels has a slightly reddening stem when handled. This
rare sister species was found in the Cascade mountains in Manning Park BC and near
Stampede Pass, WA.
Echinoderma sp. 2 aff flavidoasperum © Danny Miller
Echinoderma white - This single collection had a mostly white cap with pale, erect
scales, but we don't have any DNA yet. It's possible it was an albino form
Echinoderma white © Danny Miller
- click to expand
- small, delicate fruit bodies
- usually a striate cap margin, a clear ring that's often
movable and granular-looking scale particles
Species mentioned: Leucocoprinus brebissonii, birnbaumii,
cepistipes, ianthinus, flavescens, cretaceus, heinemannii.
Family Agaricaceae. Leucocoprinus does
not deserve its own genus, according to strict rules, as it is parphyletic with
("inside" instead of "beside" or sister to it). But it seems
to be a good monophyletic group of species with distinct characters so I am
retaining the genus name here. This is usually a hot
weather or tropical genus (mostly found in the summer), and except for
one common "wild" species, others are only found locally in potted plants
- Black granular scales on the disc making an "eye".
Very similar to
the slightly stockier 'Lepiota' atrodisca, but never has
any black on the ring. (That probably belonging in Leucoagaricus and described
above in that section). It is now a
wild species, found in forests. It was introduced to the PNW around 1994 and has
become abundant. If it's found indoors, consider L. heinemannii, below.
Leucocoprinus brebissonii © Steve Trudell
Leucocoprinus cf birnbaumii
- A bright yellow mushroom, covered in granules. Almost always found
indoors or in artificially heated areas. This is a complex of species in Europe,
so I don't know how many species we have or if the real thing is one of them. We
need local samples.
Leucocoprinus cf birnbaumii © Michael Beug
Leucocoprinus cf cepistipes
- All white, or with pale brown scales.
indoors and outdoors. We need local DNA to determine if we have the same species
as in Europe. Since most of these are non-native, introduced species, it would
not be surprising if ours was the same as the European species.
Leucocoprinus cf cepistipes © Michael Beug
Leucocoprinus cf ianthinus
- Purple. Found only indoors. Two asian sequences differ by 4 bp. I
don't have any local sequences. The type is from the UK. Again, though, it is
likely that we have the real species as it is never found in the wild.
Leucocoprinus cf ianthinus © Steve Trudell
Josh Birkeback did a study that found three additional rare species in western
Washington - species that nobody else has ever found, to my knowledge, except
for one. They
should be looked for again.
Leucocoprinus cf flavescens
- Also yellow, but not quite as bright, and often with a brownish disc and
fewer granular scales on the cap.
Found once in WA
in a covered can outside a UW greenhouse. We need local DNA as well as type area
DNA (Ohio) to compare to.
probable Leucocoprinus cf flavescens from eastern North America © Stephen Russell
Leucocoprinus cf cretaceus
- All white with a more copious powdery covering than L.
cepistipes. Found once in WA in wood chips with horse manure. We need local
DNA to prove we have the real European species.
Leucocoprinus cf cretaceus from outside North America © Daniel Winkler
- Black scaly disc, like L. brebissonii, but with larger,
more fibrillose scales instead of tiny granules, and not quite as much of
an "eye". It's a European species reported once in Washington in a
greenhouse, and just recently found again by me in a potted plant just
outside another greenhouse in Seattle.
Leucocoprinus heinemannii © Danny Miller
Cystolepiota - click to expand
- small, delicate fruitbodies
- a shaggy appearance overall from a cottony universal veil
material, no ring on the stem. Uncommon to rare.
Species mentioned: Cystolepiota seminuda, bucknallii,
moelleri, oregonensis, hetieri, fumosifolia, petasiformis
Cystolepiota cf seminuda group
- Our least rare species is probably the most slender one. It has a white cap with pinkish stem
and lots of shaggy material
that disappears in age to become "half nude". There is a
group of species matching this description all over the world; we have some east coast names but no west
coast names that I know of for potential species, so we will probably need new
names for ours. I have found 2 genetic species in the PNW, neither the likely
real thing. Nor are they closely related to our best guess of the real thing.
The second species was especially slender, but there was only one fruitbody.
Cystolepiota cf seminuda #1 and #2 © NAMA and the Field Museum of
Natural History, iNaturalist user haunma
Cystolepiota aff bucknallii
- This beautiful, purple, cottony mushroom smells strongly and disagreeably like
coal tar. This is a group of species in Europe and we have something distinct
from all of them that likely needs a new name.
Cystolepiota aff bucknallii © Lauren Ré
Cystolepiota cf moelleri
- This very rare mushroom has pink velar material on the cap. We have
potential European DNA
but need local DNA to confirm if we have this species, or what the two BC and WA
collections that resembled that species really are.
probable Cystolepiota cf moelleri © A and O Ceska
- Copious velar material, staining rusty brown in age and where handled.
Described from Oregon. We do not have DNA yet, but
it is believed to be closely related to the European Cystolepiota hetieri, which
is a group
of species in the EU.
Cystolepiota oregonensis © Danny Miller
- Not petite (~3cm) white, cottony mushroom turning smoky coloured in cap and gills in age.
WA, and we have California DNA but need Washington DNA to confirm theirs is the
- Copious cottony veil material, often forming a false conehead.
Smells farinaceous. Described from Washington, we
have California DNA and BC DNA (3 bp from each other in ITS2 only) but no
Washington DNA yet.
Cystolepiota petasiformis © Christian Schwarz
Cystolepiota aff petasiformis
- Found once in Washington, this is a
rare sister species. No photo or description
yet. Very rare.
Melanophyllum - click to expand
- a small (<5cm) amazing Cystolepiota that evolved
coloured red and/or green spores
- greyish-brown cap, bright red free gills and scales all over
the cap and stem.
Species mentioned: Melanophyllum haematospermum
Cystolepiota ('Melanophyllum') haematospermum complex
- Olive green spores when fresh, reddish brown spores when
dried. This is a group of species, all called Melanophyllum haematospermum.
Worldwide, there are at least 10 species concepts with ITS DNA >3% different
from each other, but studies have not yet found any macroscopic or microscopic
differences to be able to tell them apart yet. If the DNA is continuously
variable without distinct clades, and no other differences can be found, perhaps
it will still continue to be considered one species. But it's certainly possible
ours could be given a unique name. We only have DNA from California so far, not
Since they live "inside" Cystolepiota and not "beside" it,
they technically don't deserve their own genus if you want to insist that
Cystolepiota not be paraphyletic.
Cystolepiota ('Melanophyllum') aff haematospermum © Andrew Parker
- click to expand
- small to medium mushrooms (cap <10cm, stem <1cm thick)
- stems may be smooth, scaly or shaggy
- caps smooth or scaly, but not shaggy, granular or striate,
fruitbodies not staining red
- smooth stemmed species will usually have a brownish "eye"
of scales on the disc that break up concentrically and not
stain appreciably red (although rarely such a mushroom will be a
- (see Leucoagaricus for small mushrooms that
stain red, have pink, black or pure white scales or have reddish radiating fibrils instead of
scales that break up individually or concentrically)
Species mentioned: Lepiota megnispora, ventriosospora,
clypeolaria, erminea, alba, subincarnata, josserandii, helveola, castanea, pilodes, fuscosquamea, clypeolarioides, cortinarius, felina, fuscovinacea,
cristata, kauffmanii, castaneidisca, subnivosa, subfelina, concentrica,
Shaggy stems - click to expand
Shaggy stems, with some cottony material on the stem (some are reported as deadly poisonous)
Species mentioned: Lepiota megnispora,
ventriosospora, clypeolaria, erminea, alba, subincarnata,
medium sized PNW mushroom, described from WA, is a
little larger than most. It usually has quite a dark, coloured "eye"
on the disc. The stem is shaggy, unlike most other similar species.
The group of shaggy stemmed Lepiotas have much larger spores than most
others. The mushrooms in this group have been reported to be deadly
- Not a synonym, although some have declared it is, it appears
to have distinct DNA very close to L. magnispora. The type is from the UK,
and it is found in AZ and ID (inland desert areas, I suspect). The
scales on the rest of the cap may be a bit paler then the cap eye, and there
may be yellow on the ring, but practically, it is very difficult to
distinguish without sequences.
probable Lepiota magnispora © Steve Trudell
- This similar European species is also found in North America, commonly in
the east and uncommonly here in the west. The
eye is not usually as
distinct, and the ring on the stem is said to be less ragged.
Lepiota clypeolaria © Jan Agosti
Lepiota erminea group
- A mostly
all-white form of the shaggy stemmed Lepiotas turns out to be
an actual unique species and not an albino form, which doesn't always happen
(and it can have a somewhat brownish disc, so it is not always entirely
white). It is usually called Lepiota alba but that is a newer
DNA from a collection near the WA/ID border matches several
reliable European sequences of L. erminea within 2 or 3 bp, which is
the same amount that European sequences can vary by.
One white collection
from Idaho and another that may be from Wyoming do not match any other sequences well, so
there may be a second undescribed species in the interior. We need more collections.
Lepiota erminea © Andrew Parker
Lepiota sp. FJ235149 OR
DNA of an undescribed species in this group was found in southern Oregon
near oak. I have no collection data yet about its colour or other details.
We need more collections.
Lepiota aff subincarnata
- This deadly species has
pinkish scales on the cap and pinkish
shaggy scales on the stem. It stains slightly reddish. It is not
closely related to the L. magnispora group of deadly species, but instead,
closer to the
L. castanea group of deadly species that normally have sharper scales on their stems.
Sometimes mistakenly called Lepiota josserandii. Not unommon.
Our local DNA is 3bp and 3 indels different than the only European sequence
I can find. In this group, that would not necessarily be enough differences
to mean it's a different
species, except that within the PNW and in sequences from Korea and
Pakistan, the DNA is always consistent, and only the one EU sequence I have shows this
variation, so I'd like to see more European sequences, since it is a
Lepiota subincarnata © Michael Beug
Lepiota cf helveola
- This is a species similar to Lepiota subincarnata with
pinkish-brown scales, perhaps with a stem that is a little scalier
and less shaggy. It has been reported from the PNW but needs confirmation. We have DNA from European and eastern North
America collections that resemble this European species, but we no confirmed
DNA from anywhere yet. We need collections from everywhere to prove it is
Scaly stems - click to expand
Shaggy stems, (some are reported as deadly poisonous)
Species mentioned: Lepiota castanea, pilodes,
fuscosquamea, clypeolarioides, cortinarius, felina, fuscovinacea.
Lepiota aff castanea
- This European species has
warm brown scale colours
and sharper scales on the stem than in the species with shaggy stem
scales (in this photo they only remain at the bottom of the stem). It has
been reported to be deadly poisonous. PNW BC sequences are about 10 bp different than European sequences,
eastern NA sequences and a BC sequence close to the Yukon border (which all
seem to be the real species).
Lepiota aff castanea © Daniel Winkler
Lepiota aff pilodes
- I need a description to be able to tell this species apart from
There are written descriptions of both species, but remember,
our first species is not quite L. castanea and this
species is not quite L. pilodes, so that might complicate
how to tell them apart. It seems to be equally uncommon.
Sequences from BC, WA and CA are about 10 bp from European
material, where it was described, but no morphological or
ecological differences have been detected yet so it remains to
be seen if ours is a distinct species. Eastern North America
seems to have a third 'species' with distinct DNA.
Lepiota aff pilodes © Buck McAdoo
Lepiota sp. 5 (iNat35547281)
- This newly detected species (from BC and WA) is
similar to L. castanea. We need a way to tell it apart.
Lepiota sp. 5 (iNat35547281) © Danny Miller
- This east coast species was never described very well, and all details
except for a vague macroscopic description were not taken from the type
material and are to be taken with a grain of salt. It is described
macroscopically is similar to L. castanea, but not quite as delicate
as those above. We have DNA
from the east coast of something that vaguely looked like it could be it, but
local collections and a type study to figure out what it is. It is rumoured
to occur rarely
in the PNW, but take those rumours with a grain of salt.
possible Lepiota fuscosquamea, Quebec © Renée Lebeuf
- Another medium species like L. fuscosquamea, and also not well
understood. Described from the UK, it's not entirely clear
what this species' DNA is, but I have a guess. It's been reported
rarely from the PNW,
so we need collections to sequence. I also don't know if it is deadly.
- Also medium sized species similar to L. fuscosquamea and
clypeolarioides, but with two important differences. There is an abrupt
bulb on the bottom of the stem and the veil is cobwebby like
Cortinarius. Described from the EU, it's not
entirely clear what this species' DNA is, but I have a guess (it may be
closely related to L. clypeolarioides). It's been rumoured to
occur rarely in
the PNW, but those rumours are especially vague, so we need collections to
Lepiota aff felina
- This species has
very dark brown scales instead of warm
brown scales on the cap and stem, but it's reportedly not quite
inside one of the two deadly clades, and may not be deadly. Charles
McIlvaine, the famous American mycophagist from the late 1800s reported
eating it as part of his quest to try all the known mushrooms that weren't
known to be deadly at the time.
Fortunately for him, he found this little Lepiota instead of one of
the other deadly ones in this section. That may have been his closest brush
in his years long experiment. Our species is 6bp from European sequences, so we may need a new name. In
other parts of the world, they have their own potential species similarly
Lepiota aff felina © Steve Trudell
- This species has purplish-brown scales. We have DNA from Europe but need to confirm its presence
in the PNW (there's only been one report I know of).
Bald stems - click to expand
Bald stems, easily confused with Leucoagaricus. Check
here first for species with brownish "eyes" of scales on
the disc that break concentrically, but do not stain
appreciably red. Otherwise, see Leucoagaricus.
Rarely, your small, bald stemmed, brown eyed mushroom might be a
Species mentioned: Lepiota cristata,
- This species is recognized by usually
orange-brown colours, a
growth in disturbed places more often than natural places (although I
have sequences of it from Bridle Trails State Park, which is pretty wild), and a
strong scent that may be
pleasantly sweet and fruity or unpleasant like rubber. Its ITS DNA differs
by about 1.5% around the world (it was described from Europe), with no
geographical pattern or other detectable differences between the specimens.
That is a higher than an average species might vary (~0.5%) , but it does seem to be all one good species.
However, almost identical species do occur in addition, described next.
Lepiota cristata © Daniel Antone
Lepiota aff cristata
- This sister species is more often found in natural habitats, but otherwise matches
L. cristata. It is found in California and BC so far. Since
cristata has been found in wild places too, there's no good way to
differentiate them beyond DNA yet.
Lepiota aff aff cristata (sp. 9)
- Some BC sequences are 7-12 different from Lepiota aff cristata
(~2%). Given that Lepiota cristata has 1.5% variation within its
species, I don't know if this should represent a different species or not.
Lepiota aff aff cristata (sp. 9) © Jonathan Frank
- Described from Oregon in 1933 and never reported since, it is said to much resemble
This could be a good name for one of the two above unnamed species, but
we'll need a type sequence or more collections to find out.
Lepiota castaneidisca group
- These species are very similar to
L. cristata, but tend to have
more reddish brown colours and no umbo. They are found in natural habitats.
Practically, they can be difficult to distinguish from L. cristata,
including microscopically. There are 2 genetic species in California,
cryptic and not separable except for DNA. Our first probable PNW sequence
matches species #2. We need more collections.
Lepiota castaneidisca © Dimitar Bojantchev
Other similar species exist in California and may exist in the PNW as
well, that can be differentiated microscopically from the above groups.
Rarely, a bald stemmed, brown eyed mushroom will be a
Leucoagaricus. Check there too for Leucoagaricus
opthalmus and 'Lepiota' oculata.
Unknown species - click to expand
Poorly known other potential species.
Species mentioned: Lepiota subnivosa, subfelina, concentrica,
Lepiota sp. 8 (MF955106)
- DNA found twice in BC, once in CA. No photos or description.
Lepiota sp. 3 (MF955085)
- A related species, DNA found twice in BC, once in Norway as
Echinoderma pseudoasperulum, but it appears much more likely this and
sp. 8 are Lepiotas instead, forming their own branch.
Lepiota subnivosa, subfelina, concentrica and amplifolia
- These species were described from the PNW back in 1912, and we're still
not sure what they represent. Hopefully I'll have more information later.
Lepiota subnivosa belongs in Leucoagaricus. I don't know about
L. amplifolia. The other two probably do belong in Lepiota.
- click to expand
- LARGE mushrooms (cap ~10cm, stem 1-2cm thick) that are not Chlorophyllum
nor with erect
scales like Echinoderma
- SMALL mushrooms (cap <5cm, stem <0.5cm thick) with a
smooth stem and a ring
- try here first for small mushrooms that
stain red, have reddish
fibrils that radiate out from the cap centre instead of breaking up
individually or concentrically, and for those with pink, black or
mostly white scales
- (try Lepiota first for small mushrooms with a
brownish eye of concentric cap scales that do not stain
red appreciably, although rarely such a mushroom could be a
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus leucothites, barssii,
americanus, bresadolae, badhamii, adelphicus, erythrophaeus, georginae, roseilividus, rubrotinctus, glabridiscus,
purpureolilacinus, opthalmus, pakistaniensis. Lepiota naucina, fuliginescens, pulverapella, castanescens, flammeotincta, roseifolia, decorata, rubrotinctoides, atrodisca,
Family Agaricaceae. Some are still officially called Lepiota because they haven't
been moved yet to
Leucoagaricus , but make no mistake. They are not Lepiotas,
which are in a different family (Verrucosporaceae). They are definitely members of
- click to expand
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus
leucothites, barssii, americanus, bresadolae, badhamii, adelphicus. Lepiota
naucina, fuliginescens, pulverapella.
Many of the larger species appear to clade together as a group, but not with
enough evidence to definitively say for sure. It's probably not that simple.
Leucoagaricus leucothites (Lepiota naucina)
- Often white and with a smooth cap (and hard to recognize as a "Lepiota")
but sometimes grey and partly scaly. The stem is clavate (wider at
the bottom). There's no ITS DNA difference between the white and grey forms.
A European mushroom found throughout the PNW.
Leucoagaricus leucothites, smooth white and scaly grey © Steve Trudell
Leucoagaricus barssii -
Grey and scalier than L. leucothites, with a tapering
stem bottom and an interesting ring that's like a collar and may
be movable. Described from Oregon and found
Leucoagaricus barssii © Steve Trudell
- This scaly mushroom has brown cap scales on a white
background, and stains yellow as well as the more common orange
and red in various parts at at various times. It has a spindle shaped
stem. This east coast mushroom is also found throughout the
PNW. It has been mistaken for the similar European Leucoagaricus
Leucoagaricus americanus © Michael Beug
'Lepiota' aff fuliginescens
- Somewhat velvety brownish scales on a white background,
clavate stem base. Flesh stains orange-red (occasionally yellow) when damaged or old. It
lacks the spindle shaped stem of L. americanus.
In California, the species in this complex are stocky. In OR, WA and BC, the two
collections we have photos for of our local PNW sister species appear to be more
slender with a long stem. More collections are needed to verify this. If
so, then while the true 'Lepiota' fuliginescens belongs in the large
group, our related species will have to be keyed out with the smaller species.
'Lepiota' fuliginescens still needs to be renamed to Leucoagaricus fuliginescens.
This species has incorrectly been reported as Leucoagaricus badhamii,
a European species that is practically identical except for spore size. Uncommon
to rare up here.
California sequences of this California mushroom cluster into two clades with no
real discernable microscopic nor macroscopic differences (one of them being the
real thing). Sequences from southern OR, WA and
BC represent a third species (not the real thing, but a sister species), with about 10 total differences from the second California clade
and between 2 and 5 differences from each other (plus a bunch of known alleles that make
the differences look much larger, so not all of the remaining differences may be
significant). As I said, our local sister species appears to be more slender
than the real thing, which is a larger, stockier Leucoagaricus.
stocky 'Lepiota' fuliginescens complex member from California © iNaturalist user satucker,
slender, long stemmed PNW species from OR © Jonathan Frank and WA © Buck McAdoo
- Uniformly dark brown, suede-like scaly cap, perhaps subtly staining
red, orange or purplish at times. Also found not so uniformly brown with
more subtle scales. This California mushroom was found for the first time in
the PNW in 2019, at North Seattle Community College under landscaped trees and
also found in a yard under an old introduced apple tree where it appears that it
fruited for the very first time in 2019 as well. How interesting.
Leucoagaricus adelphicus © Mushroom Observer user Len (placeport), © Bruce
- Very similar to Leucoagaricus adelphicus, and may in fact be the same
(or possibly L. fuliginescens since this one was reported to be able to stain
yellow), but there are some subtle microscopic differences from any other known taxa that we are not going to definitely say what it is without a type sequence
or further collections. Described from Oregon in 1933. It would belong in
- click to expand
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus erythrophaeus, georginae, roseilividus, rubrotinctus, glabridiscus,
purpureolilacinus, opthalmus, pakistaniensis. Lepiota castanescens, flammeotincta, roseifolia, decorata, rubrotinctoides, atrodisca,
Red staining - click to expand
Species that turn red wherever handled or in age, sometimes dramatically so.
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus erythrophaeus, georginae. Lepiota castanescens, flammeotincta, roseifolia.
The first time I found one and touched it, it flashed
red so quickly and so brightly, I actually jumped backwards and gasped. These
four species are very difficult to tell apart without a microscope, but since
they are not actually sister species with each other, but sprinkled throughout
the clade(s) of small Leucoagaricus, they do have microscopic differences.
California has an additional half a dozen or more species not yet found in the
PNW, so precise identification of these is difficult. None are common.
- Like all the others, it has a
ring on the stem and scales on the cap that turn more reddish brown over time or
whenever touched. Every part turns red, and rather quickly. It has not yet been
moved to Leucoagaricus castanescens. Described from WA.
probable 'Lepiota' castanescens © Ron Pastorino and Christian Schwarz
- Every part stains quickly red when touched except the gills for some reason.
Described from OR. I've found more local sequences of this species than the
probable 'Lepiota' flammeotincta © Shannon Adams
- This species is a little stockier and may sort of have a collar
around the stem that the gills attach to, instead of going straight into the
cap. It was described from California, but there have been reliable reports
throughout the PNW. We still need to prove it with sequences, though. It has
previously incorrectly gone by the name Lepiota roseifolia, an
older California mushroom whose true identify is still not known for sure.
probable Leucoagaricus erythrophaeus © Ron Pastorino
- This DNA of this British mushroom has been found once in Washington. It is
said to glisten all over and turns red so easily you almost only
have to look at it. We need more information on how to tell it apart from the
Pink scaly caps - click to expand
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus roseilividus.
- A beautiful, delicate, lilac-pink scaled species. Previously known as
Lepiota roseolivida. There may be 2 similar species in California, where
it was described, but both sequences from Washington that I have match the most
common California sequences, so I'm assuming we have the real species here. The one outlying California sequence has about 10 bp
differences, but as a study could not find any macro, micro or habitat
differences, it is for the moment officially all one species.
Leucoagaricus roseilividus © Noah Siegel
'Lepiota' decorata group
- A slightly stockier medium sized pink scaled species. Described from
Oregon. It has yet to be moved officially to Leucoagaricus.
Also, there is a second cryptic species, probably in California and perhaps into
the PNW. I do not have sequences of it yet, so for now I am assuming that PNW
finds are the real thing.
'Lepiota' decorata © Ben Woo
Reddish brown radial streaks - click to expand
The cap scales of these species do not break up into individual scales nor in concentric patterns but instead the reddish-brown coloured
cap fibres radiate out from the centre of the cap towards the edge.
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus rubrotinctus, glabridiscus,
purpureolilacinus. Lepiota rubrotinctoides.
- By far the most abundant species in the group, but difficult to differentiate
from the others. Reddish-brown cap fibers radiate out from the centre but
do not break up into individual scales. It still needs to be moved to
Leucoagaricus. It has often been misidentified in the past as the European
'Lepiota' rubrotinctoides © NAMA and the Field Museum of Natural
Leucoagaricus aff rubrotinctoides
- This one sequence from Oregon came out as a sister species. We need more
sequences to confirm that there is in fact a second species, but this sequence
looks clean. I don't yet know how to tell them apart.
Leucoagaricus aff rubrotinctoides © Bitty Roy
Leucoagaricus sp. 4 cf rubrotinctoides
- Another lookalike, this time not very closely related, but sure looking like
it is. No data on it yet. Known from two collections in Oregon from the same
Leucoagaricus sp. 4 cf rubrotinctoides © NAMA and the Field Museum of
Leucoagaricus glabridiscus (=purpureolilacinus?) (=sp. 2?)
- This species is said to be bitter tasting and more delicate
with a bit darker colouration. This California mushroom (also reported
from OR, WA and ID) is said by some to be the same as the European Leucoagaricus
purpureolilacinus but we have no west coast DNA to compare it to to find
out. In Europe it is a complex of species, meaning ours may not be the real
thing and it may be best to keep using our local name.
One possible candidate for L. glabridiscus is L. aff rubrotinctus,
above, but the one photo we have is pretty stocky, and the sequence of L.
purpureolilacinus that it is close to is not the most likely candidate for
the real thing. Another somewhat likelier candidate is something I'm calling
Leucoagaricus sp. 2 for now, found once in Oregon. It is a sister
species of something that could be L. purpureolilacinus. We have no
photos, and we need collections.
Black scales - click to expand
The cap scales are blackish on these species.
mentioned: Lepiota atrodisca
Leucocoprinus brebissonii, above, is even more delicate and never with any black on its ring.
'Lepiota' atrodisca group
- Black cap scales making a distinct "eye", possibly black on the ring. 9 sequences of this mushroom (7
from CA, 2 from OR) so far turn out to be between 5 and 9 different species (yikes!),
depending on how conservative you want to be, so this
is obviously a species complex. Described from Oregon. Data from Oregon is
scarcer, but so far we have 2 species here and we need more sampling. In
California there are related species with shades of grey or green instead of
just pure black. All these are much rarer than the
very common Leucocoprinus brebissonii, which is more delicate and
never has any black on its ring.
'Lepiota' atrodisca group member © Michael Beug
Leucoagaricus sp. 3 - Uniform blackish grey scales all over the cap. Small to medium.
Found twice in Oregon and once in
Leucoagaricus sp. 3 © Danny Miller
White or brown caps - click to expand
The caps are either pure white or have a "eye" of brown scales on the disc.
Brown scales are rare in Leucoagaricus, so it is more likely that you
have found Lepiota cristata, Lepiota kauffmanii or Lepiota
castaneidisca instead of one of these. Check the bald stemmed, brown
eyed Lepiota section as well.
Species mentioned: Leucoagaricus opthalmus, pakistaniensis. Lepiota oculata, sequoiarum.
These look especially like they belong in Lepiota, which has very similar species (i.e. Lepiota cristata. Not only can you
probably not tell that these are Leucoagaricus instead of Lepiota without a microsocope, you can't tell the two of
them apart without one either.
- Reddish brown cap scales forming a prominent eye on the disc. Not staining
red. Described from Oregon. It belongs in Leucoagaricus. Probably rare.
- Differs microscopically. Described from California and the DNA was also found
in Oregon. Rare, at least in the PNW.
Leucoagaricus sp. 1 aff pakistaniensis
- Found once in Washington, this sequence is 9bp and 1 indel from the type
sequence of Leucoagaricus pakistaniensis, which has a brown eye and is
somewhat related to Leucoagaricus rubrotinctoides. Perhaps our sister
species similarly has a brown eye, but I have no photos yet.
- A mostly white 'Lepiota' described from California
with reports as far north as Oregon and Washington (not necessarily only
with Sequoia). We have DNA from California and need confirmed DNA from the
PNW to make sure our local reports aren't one of the many other whitish
species. It is actually
possible Lepiota sequoiarum © Buck McAdoo
Leucoagaricus sp. 6 - This species was found once in Oregon and was all white. It could be mistaken
for Leucocoprinus or Cystolepiota or 'Lepiota' sequoiarum. More information is needed.
California also has all white relatives of Leucoagaricus rubrotinctoides
not yet confirmed from the PNW. This species is related to L. oculata and
Leucoagaricus sp. 6 © NAMA and the Field Museum of Natural History