Lycoperdon pyriforme Schaeff.
Source: Index Fungorum
Family: Agaricaceae
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Lycoperdon pyriforme Schaef.: Pers.: Lycoperdon pyriforme Schaef.: Pers., Synops. Meth. Fung.: 145 (1801); Schaef., Icon. Jung. Bay. 4: 128 (1774).
Lycoperdon pyriforme var. excipuliforme Desmazières, Crypt. France ser. I, no. 1152 (1825).
Lycoperdon pyriforme var. tessellatum Pers., Synops. Meth. Fung.: 148 (1801). Additional synonyms: see Kreisel (1962) and Demoulin (1972b).
Selected descriptions: Demoulin (1972b: 187-192); Kreisel (1962: 134-137) .
Selected illustrations: Breitenbach & Kränzlin (1986: 519); Cetto (1988: 337); Dähncke & Dähncke (1979: 573); Marchand (1976: pl. 370); Gerhardt (1985: 198); Jahn (1979: pl. 207); Jeppson (1984: 38, drawing); Lange & Hora (1965: 219); Michael & al. (1986: pl. 149); Moser & Jülich (1989: 1); Wakefield & Dennis (1981: pl. 109, f. 3).

Diagnostic characters: on wood; smooth spores; whitish, firm subgleba; prominent white rhizoids; non-poroid capillitium; spiny spherocysts.

Fruitbodies clustered on decaying wood, pyriform to pestle-shaped, rarely subglobose, 1.5-6 cm tall, connected by thick white rhizoids; opening by fairly large rounded operculum. Exoperidium warty-granulose to slightly spiny on stipe, appressed squamulose, soon glabrous apically, exposing papery, matt endoperidium, pale brown to darker reddish brown. Gleba with distinct pseudocolumella, white through olive to grey-brown, with strong smell of gas. Subgleba firm, areolate, remaining whitish. Spore deposit olive-brown.

Basidiospores almost smooth, 3.5-4 µm diam.; sterigmal remnants absent from mounts. Capillitium brown, elastic, non-poroid, walls 0.7-1 µm thick. Paracapillitium abundant. Exoperidium with large, thick-walled, irregularly shaped, spiny, spherocysts.

Habitat: woodland, parks and gardens, on fairly strongly decayed wood, sometimes on buried wood, mostly hardwood but also softwood; prefers richer, more alkaline soils.

Distribution and frequency: almost cosmopolitan; rare in the Mediterranean region.

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