The cap of Amanita calyptroderma is 100 - 160 mm wide, pale golden yellow near the margin, sun tan to bronze brown to darker gold or tannish yellow, ovoid at first to convex, tacky (not tacky when dry), satiny to dull, with a striate margin (5 - 15% of the radius), slightly decurved at first. The volva is present as a 1 - 8 mm thick white, membranous patch. The flesh is yellowish to creamy white.
The gills are free, subcrowded, ivory white to pinkish white to dirty white, 10 - 11.5 mm broad, with a decurrent line on the stem. The short gills are rounded truncate to truncate and of diverse lengths.
The stem is 139 - 155 × 21 - 40 mm, narrowing upward to cylindric, stuffed with white cottony material to hollow, white to pale yellowish, striate above ring, smooth below, with white fibrils and faint longitudinal striations. The ring is superior to subapical, skirt-like, membranous, pale yellow fading to white in age, with the lower edge at the midpoint of the stem. The saccate volva is membranous, with a felty texture on the outside, white on the inner and outer surfaces, broken in an irregular pattern, with a short inner limb.
The spores of A. calyptroderma measure (8.6-) 9.0 - 12.0 (-24) x (5.5-) 5.8 - 7.0 (-8.5) µm and are inamyloid and ellipsoid to elongate, infrequently broadly ellipsoid or cylindric, very rarely bacilliform. Clamps are present at bases of the basidia.
This species was originally described from Oregon (USA) and occurs commonly in the Pacific coastal states of the US at the beginning of the rainy season (Autumn). The original description is puzzling because it describes the fruiting body as "green tinted." The late Dr. Harry Thiers and others have told me that infrequently they find a green tinted fruiting body of the present species. I have never seen such an example. Photographs of such a specimen accompanied by good annotations and well-dried material would be greatly appreciated by RET.
It is interesting to pause in our discussion of this species and look at the original description of Peck's species—in order to address the question "How green was it?"
How green was Dr. Lane's material that was sent to C. Peck and formed the basis of the description of "Amanita calyptrata Peck"? From the following, you have to decide what you think.
This is Peck's protolog from the Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club, vol. 27, p.14 (1900) in an article entitled "New Species of Fungi." The entire description and discussion are presented:
"Pileus fleshy, thick, convex or nearly plane, centrally covered by a large irregular persistent grayish white fragment of the volva, glabrous elsewhere, striate on the margin, greenish yellow or yellowish brown tinged with green, the margin often a little paler or more yellow than the rest : lamellae close, nearly free but reaching the stem and forming slight decurrent lines or striations on it, yellowish white tinged with green : stem stout, rather long, equal or slightly tapering upward, surrounded at the base by the remains of the ruptured volva, white or yellowish white with a faint greenish tint : spores broadly elliptic, 10 µ long, 6 µ broad, usually containing a single large nucleus.
"Pileus 10-20 cm. broad : stem 10-15 cm. long, 12-20 mm. thick.
"Rich ground in fir woods or their borders. Autumn. Oregon. Dr. H. Lane
"This is a large and interesting species, well marked and easily recognized by its large size, by the greenish tint that pervades the pileus, lamellae, annulus, and stem and especially by the large persistent patch of grayish white felty material that covers the center of the pileus and sometimes extends nearly to the margin. This is in fact the upper part of the ruptured volva that is carried up by the growing plant and is very suggestive of the specific name. In the young state the plant is entirely enveloped in the volva which then is similar to a goose egg in size and shape, and its walls are one-fourth to one-half an inch thick. So thick and firm are they that the young plant appears sometimes to be unable to break through and it decays in its infancy.
"Dr. Lane says that, having found that the Italians made use of this mushroom for food, he began eating it and introducing it to his friends, and he learned by personal trial that it is a thoroughly good and wholesome mushroom, which, when broiled with bacon, fried, baked or stewed, may be eaten with perfect safety and that it is a nutritious food."
It seems to me that, in comparison to the full description, the green color is over emphasized in the comments.
The present species differs from those of stirpes Caesarea and Hemibapha because the subhymenium is not comprised of layers of inflated cells. Instead, it has a distinctly branched structure. It shares this structure with taxa from the southwestern USA that are usually called "caesarea" or "the spring calyptrata" or "calyptroderma" by local mycologists.
The "spring calyptrata" or "spring calyptroderma" is easily differentiated from A. calyptroderma by its cap color (pale yellow), its weakly structured (nonmembranous) stem ring, and its odor of fish. It has recently been named A. vernicoccora
In the present species, the inner limb of the volva remains as yellowish fragments on the stem. In other species that may be confused with A. calyptroderma, the inner limb of the volva remains somewhat coherent and projects from the stem at an approximate right angle—looking like a "ragged, secondary, lower ring." I am very interested in receiving well-dried, well-illustrated, and well-documented collections of taxa similar to A. calyptroderma, but of the latter form. See A. cochiseana.—R. E. Tulloss
G. F. Atk. & Ballen in G. F. Atk. 1909b. Science N. S. 29(754): 944. [This is the true protolog (11 June 1909)—not the article in Ann. Mycol. (1909. 7(4): 365) that is often cited and includes a Latin diagnosis. Atkinson himself cites the article in Science as the protolog by means of a footnote in (1909c. Bot. Gaz. 48(4): 293).]
non Amanita calyptrata Lam. in Lam. & Poir. nom. illeg. (1783. Encyclopédie méthodique. Botanique I: 105). [Superfluous name; avowed replacement for Agaricus bombycinus Schaeff., a previously validly published name of the same rank. ICBN §52.1]
The editors of this site owe a great debt to Dr. Cornelis Bas
whose famous cigar box files of Amanita nomenclatural information
gathered over three or more decades were made available to RET for computerization
and make up the lion's share of the nomenclatural information presented on this site.
The following text may make multiple use of each data field.
The field may contain magenta text presenting data from a type study
and/or revision of other original material cited in the protolog of the present taxon.
Macroscopic descriptions in magenta are a combination of data from the protolog and
additional observations made on the exiccata during revision of the cited original
The same field may also contain black text, which is data from a revision of the present
taxon (including non-type material and/or material not cited in the protolog).
Paragraphs of black text will be labeled if further subdivision of
this text is appropriate.
Olive text indicates a specimen that has not been
thoroughly examined (for example, for microscopic details) and marks other places in the text
where data is missing or uncertain.
The following material not directly from the protolog of the present taxon and not cited as the work of another researcher is based on original research by R. E. Tulloss.
85 - 150 mm wide, orangish with brown tint to yellow-brown (possibly more brown with age?), with yellow to yellowish margin, campanulate-convex, tacky, dull; context white to creamy white except yellow (3A3 to slightly more orange than 3A3 to slightly more orange than 3A4) for several mm below pileipellis, some slow browning when cut, 13 - 20 mm thick at stipe, thinning evenly to margin; margin striate (0.05 - 0.15R), nonappendiculate, decurved; universal veil as single large patch 69 - 89 mm wide, up to 5 mm thick, white, becoming sordid when drying in situ, membranous, cottony at first, becoming leathery, detersile.
free with decurrent line on stipe, subcrowded, off-white in mass, off-white to pale cream in side view, unchanging when cut or bruised, 10 - 11.5 mm broad; lamellulae truncate to subtruncate.
139 - 200 × 21 - 38 mm, pale yellowish (about 3A3 to slightly oranger than 3A3), not discoloring from handling or browning slightly, cylindric or narrowing upward, not flaring at apex, with rounded and somewhat pointed base, decorated with concolorous fibrils, longitudinally substriatulate; context mostly pale yellowish, more nearly white toward base and toward central cylinder, stuffed with white cottony material, with central cylinder 5 - 18 mm wide; partial veil subapical, pale yellow, thin, membranous, tearing, striate above, smoothe below; universal veil as saccate volva, white on both surfaces, sometimes browning after handling, membranous/tough, soft, cottony becoming leathery, reaching 46 - 59 mm from stipe base to uppermost point of limb, flaring to 42 - 55 mm wide, 4.5 mm thick near pileus margin in “button” specimen, with prominent limbus internus.
Odor mildly fruity to absent. Taste not recorded.
Ethanol - negative. FeSO4 - negative. KOH - negative. Spot test for tyrosinase (paracresol) - positive throughout “button” specimen in 2 min. Spot test for laccase (syringaldazine) - negative throughout “button” specimen, negative throughout mature specimen. Vouchers for chemical tests: Lindgren 92-69, Tulloss 11-21-89-MSSF1.
Jenkins (1982): [-/-/1] 10.9 - 15.6 × 6.2 - 7.8 μm, (Q = 1.50 - 2.0; Q' = 1.75),
hyaline, thin-walled inamyloid, ellipsoid to elongate, adaxially flattened; apiculus sublateral, cylindric; contents guttulate; color in deposit not recorded.
composite of all data from material revised by RET: [160/8/6] (8.6-) 9.0 - 12.0 (-24) × (5.5-) 5.8 - 7.0 (-8.5) μm, (L = 9.9 - 10.9 (-11.1) μm; L' = 10.4 μm; W = (6.1-) 6.3 - 6.6 μm; W' = 6.4 μm;
Q = (1.29-) 1.43 - 1.81 (-3.0); Q = 1.55 - 1.68 (-1.69); Q' = 1.62),
hyaline, colorless, smooth, thin-walled, inamyloid, ellipsoid to elongate, infrequently broadly ellipsoid, rarely cylindric, adaxially flattened, infrequently expanded at one end;
apiculus sublateral, cylindric; contents dominantly monoguttulate with or without additional small granules; ?? in deposit.
Solitary to gregarious. California: At 90± m elev. Under Quercus or in Abies woods (e.g., holotype) or in mixed forest "where the Bishop Pine [Pinus muricata] start intermingling with" Arbutus menziesii, Lithocarpus densiflorus, and Q. agrifolia. Oregon: Under Pseudotsuga menziesii. Washington: Under P. menziesii in heavy clay soil not watered in summers.
RET: U.S.A.: CALIFORNIA—Contra Costa Co. - Moraga, 21.xi.1989 Chris Thayer s.n. [Tulloss 11-21-89-MSSF1] (RET 092-6). Marin Co. - ca. Inverness, Tomales Bay St. Pk., Johnstone Tr., S end, 17.xi.2005 R. Pastorino s.n. (RET 390-1). OREGON—Multnomah Co. - Portland, Washington Pk., Hoty Arboretum, 4.xi.2000 Dick Bishop s.n. (RET 385-3). WASHINGTON—Clark Co. - Lacomas Pk., 19.x.1992 J. E. Lindgren 92-69 (RET 385-4); Vancouver, corner of NE 6th Ave. and 107th St., 11.xi.2000 J. E. Lindgren 00-31 (RET 385-7), 29.x.2005 J. E. Lindgren 05-01 (RET 389-4), 6.xi.2005 J. E. Lindgren 05-02 (RET 389-5), 7.xi.2005 J. E. Lindgren 05-03 (RET 389-9), 11.xi.2005 J. E. Lindgren 05-04 (RET 389-10).
Occasionally the question of the taxonomic synonymy of A. calyptrata and A. calyptroderma arises. The only objection that is commonly put forward to this synonymy is that Peck's species is originally described as having a greenish tint, whereas, Atkinson and Ballen did not mention this tint in A. calyptroderma. The argument then acknowledges that experienced mycologists of the U.S. states of California and Oregon find olive tinted specimens of the present species on occasion. The next step in questioning the possible taxonomjc synonymy is to suggest doubt about our contemporary understanding of what "green" might have meant to Dr. Lane who provided the type specimen with annotations to Peck. It is simply a matter of fact that the word "green" used to describe a tint seen in the caps of amanita is not used rarely. The name is mentioned in the protolog of Amanita solaniolens, for example, a species which is commonly quite brown, but can have an olivaceous cast to the brown on occasion. Colors that are a mix of gray with a yellowish shade often seem olivaceous. The cap A. sinicoflava often has seemed olivaceous to RET. The point here is that ascribing a greenish cast to the cap of an Amanita is something that we have interpreted from the words of others and described ourselves.
—R. E. Tulloss
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