The Families of Mushrooms and Toadstools Represented in the British Isles


L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz


‘Coral Fungi’, ‘Fairy Clubs’.

Morphology. The fruit-bodies producing basidia and basidiospores; compound; clustered, or solitary; branched (“ramarioid”); medium sized to large (mostly), or very large; 3–15(–25) cm high; brightly pigmented (commonly), or not brightly pigmented; orange to yellow (sometimes), or white or whitish to cream or yellowish, or buff to light brown (often tan-coloured or reddening). The hymenium ribbed, or smooth. Cystidia absent. The basidia ‘unmodified’. The basidiospores yellow-brown (never white?); ornamented.

The hyphal walls lamellate, with a thin, electron-dense outer layer and a relatively thick, electron-transparent inner layer. The hyphae with dolipore septa; monomitic. The generative hyphae inflated.

Chemical reactions. The context hyphae not xanthochroic; green positive to ferric chloride.

Ecology. The fruit-bodies borne on the ground and on dead wood. Found in coniferous woodland, in broad-leaved woodland, and in mixed woodland (on decaying stumps, buried branches, conifer needles, etc.).

British representation. 37 species in Britain; Gautieria, Kavinia, Ramaria, Ramaricium.

World representation. 16 species; genera 6. “Widespread”.

Classification. Basidiomycota; Basidiomycetes; Agaricomycetidae; Phallales (i.e., cf. the 2004 BMS Check list).

Illustrations. • Ramaria botrytis, eumorpha, flava, formosa, stricta (LH). • Ramaria stricta (Berkeley).

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.’.