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Page number:109 
Description type:Non-original description 
Description:Ramaria piedmontiana Cokerapud Petersen, Sydowia 35: 181, 1982.
--- Clavaria aurea var. australis Coker, Clav. U.S. and Canada, p. 144-146,1923.
[= Ramaria aciculospora R. Petersen, nom. herb., ined.]
Fiche 2, pl. 21; Fig. 106.
Fruit bodies up to 8 x 3.5 cm, branched, narrowly obpyramidal in profile. Stipe up to 35 x 18 mm, single, grooved or lobed in cross section, so as to appear falsely fasciculate, white where protected and there covered with very thin white plush easily rubbed off in picking, watery-brunnescent where bruised. Major branches several, arising gradually from stipe, ascending, terete; axils very narrowly rounded; internodes rather uniformly long. Apices long, stout, often dichotomous within 3-4 mm of tip. All branches and apices apricot-salmon, with flesh more vivid than surface; dirt specks very weakly vinescent. Taste and odour not recorded. Under Nothofagus.
Tramal hyphae of branches 3-8 µm dram., clampless, hyaline, adherent, of short-celled hyphae (cells elongate barrel-shaped), thin-walled, parallel, tightly packed. Hymenium thickening; basidia 90-100 x 10-12 µm, clavate, clampless, with long, equal, often sinuous base; contents homogeneous when young, granular and weakly cyanophilous at maturity; sterigmata 4, up to 8 µm long, slender, erect.
Spores (Fig. 106) 13.7-16.2 x 4.7-5.2 µm (E = 2.533.23; Em = 2.92; L°' =14.79 µm), elongate-ellipsoid, with suprahilar depression, conspicuously roughened; contents deep ochraceous, obscurely guttulate; wall less than 0.3 µm thick; hilar appendix an extension of wall, not thin-walled; ornamentation of warts up to 1.2 µm high, covering significant wall surface.
COMMENTARY: Fruit bodies give the appearance of having a film of water over much of their surfaces, but this is an artifact. Flesh is dry, and the minute pruina remains intact.
Comparison of the above description with the redescription of the type specimen (Peterson 1982) shows remarkable similarities. The modest stipe, pastel coral-salmon branches and apices, clampless basidia, and spore statistics all match exactly. Only one feature requires interpretation. Coker described the stipe surface as changing to vinaceous brown on bruising or handling, which I (Peterson 1982) interpreted as rubescent. Having now seen fresh material from south-eastern North America, the colour
change seems to be brunnescent instead. Thus, even this character is the same as in New Zealand material. References to the photograph of Ramaria piedmontiana and comparison with that of R. samuelsii will show two different modes of fruit body.ontogeny. In R. samuelsii, internodes elongate significantly, the lower morethanthe upper, and the apices remain small and more or less sterile. In contrast, in R. piedmontiana, internode and apex elongation are about equal, leading in mature fruit bodies to the production of unusually long apices. Thus, mature fruit bodies take on different statures. Photographs of R. lorithamnus show it to approach R. piedmontiana but with some apical inhibition, and R. anziana to be about intermediate on such a scale.
Please note that to make such an assessment, observations must be made on both mature and immature fruit bodies. For example, I cannot predict the final disposition of Ramaria basirobusta, for I am sure that I have seen only mature fruit bodies. I speculate from long experience that they elongate even less than fruit bodies of R. samuelsii.
Ramaria piedmontiana produces extremely long, narrow spores matched in subg. Laeticolora only by R. xanthosperma (Peck) Corner, but that species produces fruit bodies which resemble those of R. sanguinea (Pers.) Quélet.
(This latter name, which has been cited as R. sanguinea (Persoon per Secretan) Quélet, can now drop reference to Secretan as a result of the nomenclature changes made in 1981.)
For some years I have pointed out that the flora of south-eastern North America includes tropical elements, especially those recorded from Pacific land masses. Taxa recorded from New Zealand have been included in that floral element. Ramaria piedmontlana is the latest example of this distribution pattern.
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