Galerina paludosa: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Galerina paludosa Mushroom
Galerina paludosa is a typical Galerina, and as such should be difficult to recognize in the field. However, its overall appearance and its habitat make it distinctive. It is found only among peat mosses (genus Sphagnum) in bogs and wet woods, either alone or in small groups.
Because the mosses it grows on are usually very tall and form deep carpets G. paludosa must have a very long stipe. When you collect it, be sure to follow its stipe down to its point of connection or you will break it off.
Galerina paludosa is described in many field guides as inedible or suspect. Because other fungi in this genus are known to be toxic toadstools - for example, Galerina marginata contains deadly poisonous amatoxins which are the same kinds of substances that make Amanita phalloides, the Death Cap, so dangerous - this species should not be collected for eating.
The genus is often confused with Conocybe, both genera having rust-brown spores and the same delicate habit. Both genera were formerly placed together in the genus Galera.
Other names: Bog Bell.
Galerina paludosa Identification
Initially, conical becoming convex then bell-shaped or slightly umbonate with an incurved margin, ochre brown to reddish-brown; hygrophanous, darkest when young and moist, drying out greyish orange and palest at the margin; 8 to 25mm in diameter when fully expanded.
Moderately spaced, adnate, often with a small decurrent tooth; with 2 or three sizes of lamellulae.
1.5 to 3mm in diameter and 4 to 12cm tall; cylindrical, paler than the cap; fibrous a covered in flaky scales; white, white partial veil forms a superior ring zone of fibrils and irregular patches of veil fibrils adhering to the stem below the ring zone. The stem base where it is attached to the moss is tomentose.
Clavate, four-spored, with clamps.
Ellipsoidal, 9.5-11 x 6-7 μm; finely warty.
Habitat & Ecological Role
On moors, in wet woodlands and bogs, invariably with Sphagnum moss, upon which it is reported to be parasitic.
Kuehneromyces mutabilis, a much larger mushroom, is similar in color range but has a pale cap center and a darker margin; it does not grow in grass but is confined to mainly hardwood substrates.
Under the microscope G. paludosa is again distinctive. Unlike many species of Galerina it lacks pleurocystidia, the elongated sterile structures extending out beyond the level of the spores from the sides of the gills. In common with all Galerina species, it has characteristic cheilocystidia at the edges of the gills. In G. paludosa these are fairly stout and shaped more or less like bowling pins. The basidiospores are not as roughened as those of most Galerina species, although some with fine roughening can be found in most mounts. Curiously, mature basidiospores from a spore print appear smoother than those still attached to the gills. Despite being nearly smooth the plage can usually be seen in some.
Galerina paludosa Taxonomy & Etymology
This attractive little mushroom was described in 1838 by Elias Magnus Fries, who gave it the binomial scientific name Agaricus paludosus.
It was German mycologist Robert Kühner (1903 - 1996) who, in 1935, transferred this species to the genus Galerina, thus establishing its currently accepted binomial name Galerina paludosa.
Synonyms of Galerina paludosa include Agaricus paludosus Fr.,Galera paludosa (Fr.) P. Kumm., Tubaria paludosa (Fr.) P. Karst., and Pholiota paludosa (Fr.) Pat.
Galerina means 'like a helmet', while the specific epithet paludosa means 'of bogs or swamps' - an appropriate epithet for this little moorland/bog mushroom.
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