What You Should Know
Entoloma bloxamii is a mushroom in the Entolomataceae family of fungi. It is pale lilac to grayish-blue to brown coloration, with larger spores than other members of this clade. It also appears to be more robust or chunky than other potential lookalikes.
It is widely distributed in Europe, although it is rare throughout its range, which also extends into Asia and North America.
It has a nondescript taste and smell. Its edibility in eastern North America is not known but many members of the genus are poisonous. David Arora reports it as a well-flavored edible in California.
Other names: Big Blue Pinkgill, Bloxam's entoloma.
Entoloma bloxamii Mushroom Identification
Saprobic; growing alone, scattered, or gregariously in coast redwood forests, or under madrone, tanoak, or oak; distributed along the West Coast; fall and winter.
5–10 cm across; convex or broadly conical, becoming broadly convex, broadly bell-shaped, or nearly flat; sticky when fresh; bald or nearly; bluish-gray to purplish gray or nearly black.
Attached to the stem by a notch; close; short gills frequent; whitish, eventually becoming pinkish to brownish pink.
5–7 x 1–2 cm; equal above a slightly tapered base; solid and firm; silky or nearly bald; whitish, sometimes tinged with grayish to purplish hues.
Thick; white, unchanging when sliced.
Odor and Taste
Spores 7–10 x 6–9 µm; isodiametric, with shallow angles; 5- or 6-sided; smooth; hyaline in KOH. Lamellar trama parallel. Basidia 4-sterigmate. Hymenial cystidia not found. Pileipellis an ixocutis; elements 2–6 µm wide, smooth, hyaline in KOH; with abundant clamp connections.
Entoloma bloxamii Look-Alikes
Smaller pinkgill with similar coloring to that of the Big Blue Pinkgill, but it is also much more slender than Entoloma bloxamii.
This has a strong floury smell and taste and a careful microscopic examination is needed to separate these species in this case.
Entoloma bloxamii Taxonomy and Etymology
This remarkable but sadly too seldom seen mushroom was described scientifically in 1854 by British mycologists Miles Joseph Berkeley and Christopher Edmund Broome (1809 - 1866), who gave it the binomial name Agaricus bloxami in honour of English clergyman and naturalist Andrew Bloxam (1801 - 1878). Quite why the name was spelt (incorrectly, surely!) bloxamii rather than bloxami (with a single i) is lost in the mists of time, but under the rules of the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature (ICBN) the error cannot now be corrected. Most gilled mushrooms were, in those days, initially placed in a gigantic Agaricus genus most of whose occupants have since been redistributed across many new genera. It was Italian mycologist Pier Andrea Saccardo who, in 1887, transferred this species to the genus Entoloma, at which point its scientific name became Entoloma bloxamii.
Synonyms of Entoloma bloxamii include Agaricus bloxamii Berk. & Broome, and (invalid) Entoloma madidum (Fr.) Gillet.
The generic name Entoloma comes from ancient Greek words entos, meaning inner, and lóma, meaning a fringe or a hem. It is a reference to the inrolled margins of many of the mushrooms in this genus.
The specific epithet bloxamii honors Andrew Bloxam.
Photo 1 - Author: BakerSt10 (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported)
Photo 2 - Author: pennybun (pennybun) (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported)
Photo 3 - Author: Richard Sullivan (enchplant) (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported)
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