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Entoloma caeruleum (P. D. Orton) Noordel.

Phylum: Basidiomycota - Class: Agaricomycetes - Order: Agaricales - Family: Entolomataceae

Entoloma caeruleum, UK

Entoloma caeruleum grows singly or in small groups in unimproved short-sward grassland..

Distribution

This rare pinkgill has been recorded in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, but it is a rare find and mostly recorded in the north. Elsewhere in Europe Entoloma caeruleum has been reported from parts of Scandinavia, including Denmark, as well as from Germany and Italy.

Entoloma caeruleum, Hampshire

Taxonomic history

This beautiful mushroom was described scientifically in 1960 by British mycologist Peter Darbishire Orton, who gave it the scientific name Leptonia caerulea. The currently-accepted scientific name Entoloma caeruleum dates from a 1980 publication by Dutch mycologist Machiel Evert Noordeloos (b. 1949).

Apart from Leptonia caeruleum, this species appears to have no other synonyms.

Etymology

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 caeruleum means dark blue.

Identification guide

Cap of Entoloma caeruleum

Cap

The cap of Entoloma caeruleum is convex and becoming flattened and slightly umbilicate; blackish blue, becoming paler at the margin and eventually fading to violaceous brown; fibrillose or finely squamulose; 1 to 5cm in diameter; margin not striate.

Pileipellis

A cutis or a trichoderm of inflated terminal elements 6-20μm diameter; clamps absent.

Gills of Entoloma caeruleum

Gills

White or yellowish at first, becoming pink and sometimes spotted with yellow; adnate-emarginate, moderately spaced; gill edge sterile; cheilocystidia abundant, cylindrical to clavate; 20-25 x 4-16μm.

Spores of Entoloma caeruleum

Spores

Heterodiametrical with 5 to 7 sides; 9-11.5 x 6-7.5µm; .

Show larger image

Spore print

Pale pink.

Stem

Cylindrical, sometimes slightly flattened and grooved, smooth, shiny, 1.5 - 5cm long x 1-5mm diameter; blue-black with a lilaceous tinge; white at the base; flesh blue-grey.

Odour/taste

Odour indistinct or slightly sweet; taste not distinctive.

Habitat & Ecological role

Solitary or in very small groups in unimproved grassland, particularly sand-dune slacks with creeping willow, .

Season

Summer and autumn.

Occurrence

Rare.

Similar species

There are several 'blue' mushrooms in the Entoloma genus, including Entoloma serrulatum, which has black flecked serrulate (finely saw-toothed) gill edges.

Culinary Notes

Entoloma caeruleum is rare and has no culinary value.

Reference Sources

Entoloma caeruleum (P.D. Orton) Noordel., Persoonia 11: 470 (1982)

Leptonia caerulea P.D. Orton, Transactions of the British Mycological Society 43 (2): 290 (1960)

Fascinated by Fungi, Pat O'Reilly 2016.

Knudsen H., Vesterholt J. (eds) Funga Nordica: agaricoid, boletoid and cyphelloid genera - Nordsvamp, 2008

Dictionary of the Fungi; Paul M. Kirk, Paul F. Cannon, David W. Minter and J. A. Stalpers; CABI, 2008

Taxonomic history and synonym information on these pages is drawn from many sources but in particular from the British Mycological Society's GB Checklist of Fungi and (for basidiomycetes) on Kew's Checklist of the British & Irish Basidiomycota.

Acknowledgements

This page includes pictures kindly contributed by David Kelly.

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