Boletus reticulatus: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Boletus reticulatus Mushroom
Boletus reticulatus (formerly known as Boletus aestivalis (Paulet) Fr.) is a basidiomycete fungus of the genus Boletus. It occurs in deciduous forests of Europe where it forms a symbiotic mycorrhizal relationship with species of oak (Quercus).
The mushroom produces fruiting bodies in the summer months which are edible and popularly collected.
Boletus reticulatus is very similar to that of Boletus edulis and these two may often be confused. Their main differences are that the cap of Boletus reticulatus is not so pale and it bears a velvety brown, rust to the chocolate cuticle which when it dries often cracks to reveal the white flesh underneath, giving the appearance of a net. Also, the stem of Boletus edulis is usually paler than that of reticulatus.
Other names: Summer King Bolete, Summer Cep.
Boletus reticulatus Identification
Starting slightly velvety becoming finely cracked. Pale brown to brown-yellow.
Has very small white pores which can yellow a bit with age.
Can have a barrel-shaped or parallel off white stem overlaid with a mesh that is lighter towards the cap.
White slightly yellowing with age.
Mainly with Beech and Oak but can grow with other broad-leaved trees.
Olive brown. Subfusiform.
Taste / Smell
Very good but not as strong as the Penny Bun.
Boletus reticulatus Look-Alikes
No poisonous mushrooms look similar, all the poisonous Boletus such as the Satans Boletus are either very red in the flesh or sponge, or stain blue immediately on cutting.
You could potentially confuse this mushroom with the Bitter Bolete, Tylopilus felleus which although not poisonous will ruin any meal you are unfortunate enough to add this mushroom too. A little nibble of the mushroom when raw will soon identify it with the Summer Bolete being delicious and the Bitter Bolete being as bitter as sin!
A better way to distinguish the two is that the Summer Bolete has a lighter net-like mesh on a slightly darker stem, the Bitter Bolete has a darker mesh on a lighter stem, pictured.
Boletus reticulatus Taxonomy & Etymology
This large bolete was described in 1793 by French mycologist Jean Jacques Paulet (1740 - 1826), who called it Boletus aestivalis; its currently accepted name dates from 1774, when this species was formally described by Jacob Christian Schaeffer and renamed Boletus reticulatus.
Until recently this large to massive bolete was most commonly referred to as Boletus aestivalis (Paulet) Fr. Among its many other synonyms, you may see Boletus edulis ssp. reticulatus (Schaeff.) Konrad & Maubl., and Boletus edulis f. reticulatus (Schaeff.) Vassilkov.
The generic name Boletus comes from the Greek bolos, meaning 'lump of clay', while the specific epithet reticulatus is a reference to the strongly reticulated or net-like pattern on the stem of this bolete. (Its synonymous specific name aestivalis means 'summer.)
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