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Page number:190 
Remarks (internal):All material that has been examined from California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington has been on conifers. The recent statement of Maas Geesteranus (I97I) that the species known as H. coralloides in Europe is found only on conifers, will require careful collecting of all species of Hericium and comparison of typical collections again. It is unfortunate that the exact conifer species affected in Europe cannot be ascertained from the literature available to me.
In North America, this species is the giant among hericiums. It varies considerably in size, apparently depending on the bulk of the tree trunk affected, and whether moisture conditions were favorable for maximum growth. The color of the young fruit-body varies from salmon buff to white, and stains yellowish in age. It was thought that the white fruit-bodies of H. ramosum and H. coralloides were distinctive, but Smith's collection 81095 of H. coralloides was vinaceous when young, indicating that colored strains of the latter exist in Michigan.
Maas Geesteranus has annotated various collections on western conifers in the National Fungus Collections at Beltsville as H. coralloides, although he noted that it had smaller spores than the species on conifers in Europe. Harrison (1964) when publishing on Hericium abietis, pointed out the spores were intermediate in size between H. ramosum and H. coralloides, and recognized it as a distinct species. Recently, it has been possible to compare specimens held in the National Fungus Collections at Beltsville. Three of those selected were from conifers in Europe, three were on conifers in Idaho, and one on Fagus in Hungary. The measurements obtained are given in the following table:
H. coralloides on coniferous wood in Europe.
Kreiger 1158 4.6-5.6 x 4.2-5.6 µm av. 25 spores 5.3 x 4.9 µm
A. Pilát 5.2-6.0 x 4.8-6.0 µm av. 25 spores 5.5 x 5.3 µm
F. Bubak 4.8-6.0 x 4.6-5.6 µm av. 25 spores 5.5 x 5.1 µm
H. coralloides on Fagus in Europe.
G. Linhart 442 5.0-6.2 x 4.8-5.6 µm av. 20 spores 5.6 x 5.3 µm
H. abietis on coniferous wood in Idaho.
J. R. Weir 16017 4.6-5.4 x 4.0-4.8 µm av. 10 spores 4.9 x 4.5 µm
J. R. Weir 16020 4.4-5.6 x 4.0-4.8 µm av. 25 spores 4.9 x 4.6 µm
J. R. Weir (19 Sept. 1916) 4.4-5.6 x 4.0-4.8 µm av. 40 spores 4.9 x 4.45 µm
The spore measurements from the collection on Fagus are within the range of those on coniferous wood, indicating that the host range is broader than stated by Maas Geesteranus.
The difference in the average spore size between European H. coralloides and H. abietis is apparent in this table and is considered taxonomically significant. In addition, H. abietis differs in normally being larger and usually having a colored fruit-body, when compared with H. coralloides. Also, H. abietis causes a destructive heart rot of commercially valuable coniferous timber. It is highly significant that H. abietis does not attack deciduous wood in the Pacific Northwest, and that H. coralloides (with one exception) is not found on coniferous wood in the east. Therefore, H. abietis is being maintained as a species distinct from the H. coralloides forms of North America and Europe.
 
Description type:Non-original description 
Description:4. Hericium abietis (Weir ex Hubert) K. Harrison. Canad. Jour. Bot. 42: 1208. 1964. Fig. 7
Hydnum abietis Weir ex Hubert. Outl. For. Path., 305. 1931.
Hericium weirii A. H. Smith. Mushr. Hunt. Field Guide, rev. ed. 60. 1963. (nom. nud.)
Basidiocarp up to 75 x 25 cm, either a solid tubercle or branched compactly or openly (numerous forms exist); white to yellowish, sometimes pinkish buff when young, tending to stain yellowish when bruised. Context firm, pallid. Odor and taste mild.
Spines up to 1 cm long, very short and stout when young, pointed, on ends of nodules on the branches or in tufts on the ends.
Stipe lacking, represented by large, solid, occasionally massive, tubercle attached laterally to the wood by rooting strands. The basal mycelium is interwoven with rhizomorphic strands; hyphae on surface of basal tubercle nonamyloid, prominently clamped, 2-3 µm wide, cells long, walls thin.
Chemical reactions have not been obtained on fresh material. No KOH reaction when dried; Melzer's reagent gave amyloid reaction to tramal context, branches, and spines.
Spores 4.5-5.5(-6.0) x 4.0-4.5(-5.0) µm, subglobose, white, finely roughened to smooth, strongly amyloid with walls appearing to vary in thickness, and the roughest reacted most strongly to Melzer's; centers of spores of one collection were dextrinoid. Basidia 5-7 x 25-30 µm, with walls irregular wavy; cystidia represented by flexuous, slightly clavate, hyphal end cells. Gloeocystidia 8-12 µm; ends of oleiferous hypha traced for 200 µm to union with thick-walled hyphae; exposed ends in hymenium more or less moniliform, thin-walled, usually burst in Melzer's reagent and exuding oily contents. Hymenium and subhymenium nonamyloid, dull yellow in Melzer's; subhymenium compact, 20-30 µm thick, consisting of a layer of thin-walled generative hypha 3-4 µm in diameter.
Hyphae of the basidiocarp amyloid, flexuous, often bifurcating broadly, with angle as between extended thumb and first finger, interwoven, variable in width, often swollen where ends of cells meet, usually clamped at the septa, thick-walled, with lumen filled in some.
This fungus causes a typical "white pocket rot" of Abies grandis (Dougl.) Lindl., A. lasiocarpa (Hook.) Nutt., A. procera Rehd., Picea engelmannii Parry ex Engelm., Tsuga heterophylla (Raf.) Sarg., Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb) Franco in the Pacific Northwest. In Canada, it was reported from British Columbia by Bier (1949) as Hydnum sp. causing a "long pitted trunk rot" of western hemlock and true fir. Foster and Foster (1951) also reported it as a cause of a rot of western hemlock. In Alaska, Hydnum abietis was reported by Englerth (1947) as the cause of a serious rot of western hemlock, and in one instance of a rot of Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.
 
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