|Major Groups > Stinkhorns > Phallus ravenelii|
by Michael Kuo
This eastern North American stinkhorn is easily distinguished by its smooth--rather than pitted and ridged--cap surface. Like Phallus impudicus it is often found in lawns, gardens, and cultivated areas, though it also grows in woods. It develops from an underground "egg," and when mature it is covered with a foul-smelling brown or olive brown slime which attracts flies and other insects (who then, in turn, disperse the mushroom's spores).
Ecology: Saprobic; growing alone or gregariously in gardens, flowerbeds, meadows, lawns, woodchips, sawdust piles, cultivated areas, and so on--also in woods; summer and fall (also over winter along the Gulf Coast); widely distributed east of the Rocky Mountains.
Immature Fruiting Body: Like a whitish to pinkish "egg"; when sliced revealing the stinkhorn-to-be encased in a gelatinous substance.
Mature Fruiting Body: Spike-like, to 20 cm; with a 3 to 4.5 cm cap which is smooth (or slightly roughened, but not pitted and ridged) and covered with olive brown to dark brown slime; developing a small hole with a white rim at the tip of the cap; with a whitish to yellowish or pinkish hollow stem, 1.5-3 cm thick; usually with a white or pink volva clinging to the stem and around the base; the base attached to whitish rhizomorphs.
Microscopic Features: Spores 3-4.5 x 1-2 µ elliptical; smooth.
REFERENCES: Berkeley & M. A. Curtis. (Coker & Couch, 1928; Smith, Smith & Weber, 1981; Lincoff, 1992; Metzler & Metzler, 1992; Barron, 1999; McNeil, 2006; Miller & Miller, 2006.) Herb. Kuo 09300509.
Cite this page as:
Kuo, M. (2004, November). Phallus ravenelii. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: http://www.mushroomexpert.com/phallus_ravenelii.html