The Families of Mushrooms and Toadstools Represented in the British Isles


L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz



Anamorphic forms occurring.

Morphology. The fruit-bodies producing basidia and basidiospores; persistent; flattened and more or less appressed to the substrate or encrusting, with the hymenium on the outside (resupinate, smooth); of indeterminate size and shapw, small to large; brightly pigmented, or not brightly pigmented (mostly); white or whitish, or buff to straw-coloured, or yellowish-brown, or light brown, or orange, or blue, or grey, or blackish. The hymenium smooth. Cystidia absent (from the hymenium). The basidia ‘unmodified’ (short, clustered); 4-sterigmate to 5–8 sterigmate (4–6(-8)). The basidiospores ballistosporic; hyaline; smooth; inamyloid (Hawksworth et al.).

The hyphal walls lamellate, with a thin, electron-dense outer layer and a relatively thick, electron-transparent inner layer. The hyphae monomitic. The generative hyphae not inflated. The context hyphae exhibiting distinctive right-angled branching.

Ecology. Saprophytic. The fruit-bodies often on dead wood. Associated with broad-leaved trees and with conifers. On many substrates, including dead polypores as well as hard- and soft-woods.

British representation. 14 species in Britain; Botryobasidium, Botryohypochnus.

World representation. 52 species; genera 2. “Widespread”.

Classification. Basidiomycota; Basidiomycetes; Agaricomycetidae; Cantharellales (formerly Stereales).

Illustrations. • Botriobasidium aureum, conspersum and subcoronatum, Botriohypochnus isabellinus (Læssøe & Petersens). • Botriobasidium subcoronatum: anatomical detail (G. Langer).

To view the illustrations with captions giving names in current use, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, distributions of character states within any set of taxa, source references, and other relevant material.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2008 onwards. The families of mushrooms and toadstools represented in the British Isles. Version: 6th March 2015.’.