Major Groups > Gilled Mushrooms > Dark-Spored > Stropharia, Leratiomyces & Psilocybe > L. squamosus var. thraustus


Leratiomyces squamosus var. thraustus

[ Basidiomycetes > Agaricales > Strophariaceae > Leratiomyces . . . ]

by Michael Kuo

This rare but gorgeous mushroom is found across North America, decomposing woody debris on the forest floor under hardwoods or conifers. Its slimy cap is a beautiful shade of orange and, when young, is adorned with tattered white remnants of the partial veil. The ringed stem is shaggy with white scales, and becomes brownish as the mushroom matures. Similar species are typically not as orange, differ in habitat, or have different microscopic characters (see below).


Ecology: Saprobic; growing alone or gregariously on woody debris in hardwood and conifer forests; summer and fall; widely distributed in North America.

Cap: 2.5-7 cm; convex, becoming broadly convex or broadly bell-shaped; slimy; reddish orange to brick red or orange; smooth; when young adorned with white partial veil remnants.

Gills: Attached to the stem; close or nearly distant; pale at first, later purplish gray to purple-black; with whitish edges when mature.

Stem: 6-12 cm long; up to 1 cm thick; dry; with a ring that is grooved on its upper surface and is usually arched gracefully downwards and away from the stem; fairly smooth above the ring, densely scaly below; white at first, becoming brownish with maturity; base with white mycelial threads.

Flesh: White, becoming brownish in the stem.

Odor and Taste: Not distinctive.

Spore Print: Dark purple-brown to blackish.

Chemical Reactions: KOH on cap surface negative.

Microscopic Features: Spores 11-14 x 6-8.5 µ; smooth; elliptical; with an off-center germ pore. Pleurocystidia (chrysocystidia) absent. Cheilocystidia abundant; filamentous or subfusoid; often with subacute tips. Pileipellis a thin ixocutis of cylindric elements over a nearly cellular subpellis.

Stropharia thrausta, Psilocybe thrausta, Stropharia squamosa var. thrausta, and Psilocybe squamosa var. thrausta are synonyms.

REFERENCES: (Schulzer, 1873) Bridge & Spooner, 2008. (Saccardo, 1887; Stamets, 1978; Smith, Smith & Weber, 1979; Guzman, 1983; McKnight & McKnight, 1987; Phillips, 1991/2005; Lincoff, 1992; Barron, 1999; Noordeloos, 1999; Roody, 2003; McNeil, 2006; Miller & Miller, 2006; Spooner et al., 2008.) Herb. Kuo 10010413.

Leratiomyces squamosus var. squamosus has a yellow-brown to creamy yellowish cap; it is otherwise identical to Leratiomyces squamosus var. thraustus.

If you are in coastal California, be sure to compare Leratiomyces squamosus var. thraustus with Leratiomyces ceres, which grows in wood chips in urban settings, is more orange-red, and features chrysocystidia.

Further Online Information:

Psilocybe squamosa var. thrausta at Roger's Mushrooms


Leratiomyces squamosus var thraustus

Leratiomyces squamosus var thraustus

Leratiomyces squamosus var thraustus

Leratiomyces squamosus var thraustusCheilocystidia

© MushroomExpert.Com

Cite this page as:

Kuo, M. (2009, February). Leratiomyces squamosus var. thraustus. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: