Dacrymyces Chrysospermus: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Dacrymyces Chrysospermus Mushroom
Dacrymyces Chrysospermus is an uncommon and very attractive mushroom that grows on rotting conifer logs, such as the Loblolly Pine (Pinus taeda) log here. It is reported to be edible. Similar to Witch's Butter (Tremella aurantia) (also edible), which is usually found on rotting hardwoods. Orange Jelly is also called Orange Witches' Butter and was formerly known by the synonym Dacrymyces palmatus.
Gregarious or in merging groups on dead conifer wood, including fence posts and rails, this rather uncommon fungus has a preference for timber that is already fairly well rotted.
The fruitbodies can appear at any time of the year during periods of wet weather; this is not a very helpful identification feature, however, as it is a characteristic shared with many of the other members of the order Dacrymycetales.
Other names: Orange Jelly.
Dacrymyces Chrysospermus Identification
Dacrymyces Chrysospermus is common and widespread in North America. Irregular brainlike or lobed gelatinous mass; yellowish-orange to orange; whitish near the rooting point of attachment.
Occurrence on wood substrate
Saprobic; forming dense clusters on decaying conifer wood; May through November.
Fruitbodies 1-6 cm wide and up to 2.5 cm high.
Dacrymyces Chrysospermus Look-Alikes
Another orange jelly-like species, produces smaller, cushion-like fruitbodies and occurs on hardwoods as well as softwoods.
Produces fruitbodies of similar color but the lobes are often larger and generally more convoluted; its spores are white.
Dacrymyces Chrysospermus Taxonomy & Etymology
In 1873 this fungus was described by British Mycologist Miles Joseph Berkley (1803 - 1889) and New Zealander Moses Ashley Curtis, who gave it the name Dacrymyces chrysospermus; this remains its generally-accepted scientific name.
Synonyms of Dacromyces chrysospermus include Tremella palmata Schwein., and Dacrymyces palmatus (Schwein.) Bres.
Set up by Nees in 1816, the genus Dacrymyces is named from Dacry- meaning a tear (as in weeping) and -myces meaning fungus, while the specific epithet chrysospermus comes from Chrys- meaning golden and -spermus meaning seed. (The spores of this fungus are indeed yellow when seen in mass.)
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