Pholiota populnea: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Pholiota populnea Mushroom
Pholiota populnea is found singly or in clusters on logs and dead wood, particularly on cottonwood trees in the floodplains of Fontenelle Forest where it is uncommon. It is usually seen from September to November.
The mushroom cap is about 3-8 inches wide and is white or creamy. It is convex when young but expands to more broadly convex as it ages.
It has a shaggy margin from the remains of its veil. The gills are attached, close, broad, white becoming brown. The flesh is thick, firm, and white. The stalk is 2-6 inches long enlarging downward to the base. It has a partial veil at the base that is white and copious leaving a ring on the upper part of the stalk.
Its name comes from the fact that it rapidly destroys the wood on which it feeds.
Other names: Destructive Pholiota, Poplar Pholiota, Poplar Scalycap.
Pholiota populnea Identification
Saprobic; growing alone, gregariously, or in clusters on the deadwood of cottonwoods (Populus trichocarpa, Populus deltoides, Populus deltoides ssp. monilifera, Populus angustifolia, and Populus balsamifera) and occasionally on the wood of other hardwoods (especially willows) in riparian ecosystems; often growing from cut surfaces of recently downed logs; late summer, fall, and winter; widely distributed in North America.
8–26 cm; convex, becoming broadly convex; surface sticky or slimy when fresh and young, but soon dry; bald and yellowish-brown underneath cottony, whitish to buff scales and veil remnants; margin shaggy.
Narrowly attached to the stem; close; short-gills frequent; whitish when young, becoming brownish to cinnamon brown; at first covered by a copious white partial veil.
4–10 cm long; 3–6 cm thick; robust and club-shaped (but often becoming more equal with age); dry; densely covered with cottony white scales similar to those on the cap; near the apex usually featuring a large, recurved, white ring that becomes cinnamon brown with spores.
White; not changing when sliced.
Odor and Taste
Not distinctive, or slightly foul.
Spores 7–9 x 4–5 µm; ellipsoid; smooth; thick-walled; pale brown in KOH; brownish or orangish in Melzer's reagent. Pleurocystidia not found. Cheilocystidia inconspicuous; 20–35 µm long; basidiole-like (clavate to cylindric); thin-walled; hyaline in KOH. Pileipellis an ixocutis of clamped elements 2.5–5 µm wide; hyaline to yellowish in KOH. Clamp connections present.
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