Agrocybe pediades: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Agrocybe pediades Mushroom
Agrocybe pediades is a typical lawn and other types of grassland mushroom, but can also grow on mulch containing horse manure. This common inhabitant of grassy areas is characterized by a smooth (sticky when moist), buff-brown cap, brown spores, slender stipe, and a soon disappearing fibrillose veil.
Look-alikes include Marasmius oreades with slightly distant, cream-colored gills and white spores, Stropharia coronilla, with purplish gills, purple-brown spores and a striate-edged annulus, and Panaeolus foenisecii, with a darker-brown cap, mottled dark gills and dark-brown spores. To confirm an identification, a microscope is needed to check the cuticle which is cellular and the spores which have an apical pore.
Agrocybe pediades is easily confused with any number of seriously poisonous brownish mushrooms - for example, Hebeloma mesophaeum - and so is best considered inedible and therefore avoided when gathering mushrooms to eat.
Agrocybe pediades Identification
Saprobic; growing alone or gregariously in lawns, meadows, and other grassy areas (also sometimes on woodchips, manure, or compost); summer, or nearly year-round in warm climates; originally described from Europe; common and widely distributed in North America; also found in the Caribbean, South America, Asia, and Oceania.
1–3 cm across; convex, becoming broadly convex or nearly flat; bald; sometimes sticky when fresh; dark honey yellow, fading to pale brownish yellow; often with a thin strip of white partial veil remnants on the margin when very young.
Narrowly attached to the stem; close or nearly distant; short-gills frequent; pale yellow-brown becoming darker brown; when young covered by an ephemeral white partial veil.
2–8 cm long; 2–4 mm thick; more or less equal; bald or finely fibrillose; colored like the cap; sometimes twisted; basal mycelium white.
Whitish; not changing when sliced; thin.
Dull brown with a hint of cinnamon.
Agrocybe pediades Taxonomy & Etymology
When Elias Magnus Fries described this mushroom in 1821 he gave it the scientific name Agaricus pediades.
It was the Swiss mycologist Victor Fayod (1960 - 1900) who, in 1889, transferred this species to the genus Agrocybe (which Fayod himself first proposed in 1889), thereby establishing its currently-accepted scientific name Agrocybe pediades.
Synonyms of Agrocybe pediades include Agaricus pusillus Schaeff., Agaricus semiorbicularis Bull., Agaricus pediades Fr., Agaricus arenicola Berk., Naucoria pediades (Fr.) P. Kumm., Naucoria semiorbicularis (Bull.) Quél., Agrocybe semiorbicularis (Bull.) Fayod, Naucoria arenaria Peck, Agrocybe arenicola (Berk.) Singer, Naucoria subpediades Murrill, Agrocybe arenaria (Peck) Singer, and Agrocybe subpediades (Murrill) Watling.
Not all fieldcap fungi occur in open fields, but Agrocybe pediades is a mushroom of fields of various sorts. (In the past this mushroom was occasionally referred to as the 'Common Fieldcap', and although many other Agrocybe species are more common than this species its common name in the British Mycological Society's list of English Names for Fungi is now Common Fieldcap. The term 'fieldcap' is derived from Agro-, of fields, and -cybe, head or cap, and is, therefore, a direct translation of the generic name Agrocybe. The specific epithet pediades means 'of the plains, or 'of the soil'.
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