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Sheathed Woodtuft

Edible Edible
Autumn Autumn
Spring Spring
Summer Summer
Winter Winter

A medium sized, choice edible mushroom but with a potentially deadly poisonous look-a-like, therefore great care should be taken if collecting this species. Can be found at any time of year but more common in Summer and Autumn.

Mushroom Type
Common Names Sheathed Woodtuft
Scientific Name Kuehneromyces mutabilis
Synonyms Pholiota mutabilis
Season Start All Year
Season End All Year
Average Mushroom height (CM) 5
Average Cap width (CM) 4
Please note that each and every mushroom you come across may vary in appearance to these photos.

Cap

Convex then expanding and usually broadly umbonate. Bright orange-cinnamon when moist, drying pale ochraceous from the centre. Surface smooth, whitish at margin due to remaining parts of the veil.

Gills

Crowded, attached to the stem (adnate) or slightly running down (decurrent), narrow. Light ochraceous at first, turning cinnamon brown with age. The edges are smooth.

Cortina / Veil

Has a very short lived veil covering the gills on young mushrooms.

Stem

4–10 cm tall, 0,3–1 cm wide, cylindrical, curved, clustered, hollowed with age. Pale and smooth at apex, darker tan to blackish towards the base, scaly below the ephemeral ring.

Skirt

Ascending, small, ephemeral. The ring-zone is often brown from spore deposition.

Flesh

Thin, pale yellowish in cap, tough and brownish at stem.

Habitat

Saprotrophic on dead wood of broadleaved trees, particularly birch. Grows in big clusters (caespitose), it can be found all year long, but most of the fruit bodies are produced during Summer to Autumn.

Possible Confusion

The Funeral Bell, pictured, is very similar but prefers conifers although can be found on hardwood as well. It grows in small clusters. The most important difference can be found on the stem. Under its membranous ring or ring-zone, the Funeral Bell stem is covered with silky-white to silver fibres. Be aware that the Funeral Bell is a highly toxic, potentially lethal species.

The Velvet Shank is a typical winter species, it doesn’t have a ring, its stem is velvety and darkening towards the stem base.

Taste / Smell

Smell and taste pleasant. It is a choice edible mushroom for many of us!

Frequency

Very common and widespread in the UK. 

Spores

Spore print is deep ochre or sepia brown. Spores are broadly ellipsoid, smooth and light green with germ-pore.

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