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Page number:1208 
Description type:Non-original description 
Description:Hericium abietis (Weir ex Hubert) K. Harrison, comb. nov.
Hydnum abietis, Hubert, E. E., Outline Forest Pathology, p. 305. New York. 1931
Hericium weirii, Smith, A. H., Mushroom Hunter's Field Guide, revised and enlarged ed. p. 60. Ann Arbor. 1963
Fruit body large to massive, up to 75 cm high and 25 cm wide, arising from a solid tubercle, branching, open or compact and producing an "alpestre" form (Sm 2582, 58803) and a "Caput ursi" form; color "salmon buff" pinkish buff to yellowish or white and tending to stain yellow on bruising. Context firm, pallid, odor and taste mild. Spines up to 1 cm long, when young appearing very short and stout, pointed, attached to the ends of branches or to nodules on them. Stipe lacking, attachment by a large solid, occasionally massive tubercle from which the branches develop.
Spores 4.5-5.5(6) x 4-4.5(5) µm subglobose, white, finely roughened to smooth, strongly amyloid. Basidia 5-7 x 25 µm, clavate, four-spored. Cystidia present as flexuous hyphal structures and scattered gloeocystidia 8-12 µm in diam., originating from oleiferous hyphae (one traced 200 µm to where it joined a normal thick-walled hypha), at times (Wiebe coll. from Willamette, Ore.) more or less moniliform in shape. Hyphae of the fruit body (context, tubercle, branches, and spines) amyloid, flexuous, often bifurcating broadly with the angle as between the thumb and first finger, interwoven, variable in width, 5-12 µm in diam.; thick-walled (lumen filled in some), swollen where the ends of the cells meet, clamp connections usually present at septa. Hymenium 25-30 µm thick, non-amyloid; originating from a layer of thin-walled generative hyphae 3-4 µm in diam. in a compact layer 20-30 µm thick.
Habit, habitat, and distribution: On coniferous logs and trees. It is considered as causing a "typical white pocket rot" of Abies grandis Lindl. Also on A. lasiocarpa (Hook.) Nutt., A. procera Rehd., Tsuga heterophylla (Raf.) Sarg., Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco.
Material examined: California, Sm 56096A, 5609613; Idaho, Sm 15896; Oregon, Sm 19022, 19454, 19455; Washington, Sm 16648, 27418, 27488, 27489, 27491, 28503, 31208, 31405, 31504, 31781, 40175, 40171, 40336, 40692, 41056, 41057, 41059, 54693.
This is the giant of the hericiums, and is confined to coniferous wood in the Pacific Northwest. In microscopic details it is intermediate between Hericium ramosum (Bull. ex Merat) Letellier and H. coralloides (Scop. ex Fries) S. F. Gray and has the same range of growth forms. The spores are intermediate in size. The color of the fresh fruit body is salmon buff, occasionally white, staining yellowish, whereas the other two species are white.
The collections in the University of Michigan Herbarium were recognized as a new species in 1960, labelled H. weirii sp. nov., and this name has appeared in The Mushroom Hunter's Field Guide, revised and enlarged by Alexander H. Smith (1963). However, the research by Maas Geesteranus (1960) has shown that the original name Hydnum abietis used by Dr. Weir was validly published by Hubert with a type collection and the change to Hericium is being made at this time. A name is needed as this species is being recognized by foresters as a cause of a disease of conifers. The organism has been isolated and the cultures recognized as distinct by Dr. M. K. Nobles (personal communication).
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