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Page number:116 
Remarks (internal):The giant fruitbody is among the largest known. Specimens of more than 20 kg in weight have been recorded and specimens over 4 kg are commonly recorded. Much sought after as an edible fungus. In continental Europe another five species of Calvatia occur.  
Description type:Non-original description 
Description:Calvatia gigantea (Batsch: Pers.) Lloyd, Myc. Writ. 1, Note 269: 166 (1904). Lycoperdon giganteum Batsch, Elench. Fung.: 237 (1786).
Lycoperdon giganteum Batsch: Pers., Synops. Meth. Fung.: 140 (1801). Bovista gigantea (Batsch: Pers.) Gray, Nat. arr. Brit. Pl. 1: 583 (1821).
Langermannia gigantea (Batsch: Pers.) Rostk. in Sturm, Deutschl. Fl. 3:: 23 (1839). Lasiosphaera gigantea (Batsch: Pers.) Smarda in Flora CSR, B.1: 308 (1958). Lycoperdon bovista Bull.: Pers., Synops. Meth. Fung.: 141 (1801).
Calvatia maxima (Schaeff.) Morgan in Journ. Cinc. Soc. Nat. Hist. 12: 166 (1890).
Selected descriptions: Zeller & Smith (1964: 167-169); Kreisel (1962: 121-123); Eckblad (1955: 32-33).
Selected illustrations: Marchand (1976: pl. 372); Dähncke & Dähncke (1979: 569); Michael & al. (1986: pl. 143); Ryman & HolmÀ¥sen (1984: 596); Phillips (1981: 247); Gerhardt (1985: 206); Bon (1987: 305); Lange & Hora (1965: 217, as Lycoperdon giganteum); Wakefield & Dennis (1981: pl. 109, f. 1, as Calvatia gigantea).
Diagnostic characters: large size; ball-like appearance; lack of evident subgleba.
Fruitbody depressed-globose, with a thick pseudorhiza, 20-50(-70) cm diam, white, later yellowish to olive brown, very finely velvety to smooth. Ectoperidium thin, evanescent, white. Endoperidium thin, fragile, finally breaking away leaving exposed gleba. Gleba white, then yellow to dark olive-brown. Subgleba rudimentary, not al veolate. Spore deposit olive-brown.
Capillitium of Lycoperdon-type with rounded pores and distant septa, sparsely branched, fragile, 2.5-9 µm diam., walls up to 1.5 µm, yellow brown. Spores globose to subglobose, 3.5-5.5 µm diam., asperulate, pale olive-brown, without sterigma remnants.
Habitat: in nutrient rich grasslands, parks, cultivated fields, compost heaps in gardens, hedgerows and woodland; nitrophilous.
Distribution and frequency: temperate regions worldwide excluding S. America and western North America.
 
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