What You Should Know
Mycena meliigena is a very small fungus that appears in cracks in the black bark of holm oak in very humid environments. The thin stem extends horizontally from the trunk, but twists to the vertical to hold a hemispherical cap.
During wet and not-so-cold winters, Mycena meliigena suddenly grows profusely from the bark, usually between the lichens and moss, rather than from the wood. There can be hundreds of each oak tree in wooded areas. However, the beauty is fleeting. Once the moisture is gone, so will Mycena meliigena.
Mycena meliigena is poorly edible. The mushroom tastes mild. Its smell can be described as earthy and putrid.
Mycena meliigena Mushroom Identification
5-10 mm across, hemispherical, parabolical to convex, often somewhat flattened or depressed centrally, sulcate, translucent-striate, pruinose, vinaceous red, brownish pink, dark violet or pale brown with a lilaceous tinge, turning more brownish at age.
6-14 reaching the stem, broad, the edge convex, adnate, more or less decurrent with a short tooth, at first concolorous with the cap, then whitish and finally more or less sepia gray-brown, the edge paler.
4-20 x 0.2-1 mm, pruinose to white-floccose, glabrescent, becoming shiny, more or less concolorous with the cap, base densely covered with long, white fibrils.
On (usually moss-covered) bark of various living deciduous trees. Autumn to winter. Common in south-east Norway, rare elsewhere.
Basidia 30-36 x 10.5-13.5 µm, clavate, 2- or 4-spored. Spores from 4-spored basidia 8-11 x 8-9.5 µm, from 2-spored basidia up to 14.5 µm, Qav ˜ 1.1, globose to subglobose, amyloid. Cheilocystidia 15-40 x 6-14 µm, occurring mixed with the basidia, clavate, covered with unevenly spaced, simple to branched, curved to tortuous excrescences up to 12.5 µm long. Pleurocystidia absent. Lamellar trama dextrinoid. Hyphae of the pileipellis 2.5-9 µm wide, covered with warts or cylindrical excrescences. Hyphae of the cortical layer of the stem diverticulate, the terminal cells up to 80 µm long, usually slender, clavate, diverticulate. Clamps are present in 4-spored form, absent in 2-spored form.
Mycena meliigena Taxonomy and Etymology
Mycena meliigena (Gender: Feminine) was scientifically described by P.A. Saccardo and effectively published in 1887. The name Mycena meliigena is of type combination. Mycena meliigena has the status legitimate.
The scientific classification of Mycena meliigena is Fungi, Dikarya, Basidiomycota, Agaricomycotina, Agaricomycetes, Agaricomycetidae, Agaricales, Mycenaceae, Mycena. For further information, please see P.A. Saccardo (1887, p. 302).
Mycena meliigena Synonyms
Agaricus meliigena Berk. & Cooke
Mycena meliigena f. alba Courtec.
Prunulus meliigena (Berk. & Cooke) Murrill
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