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Bovista plumbea . Pers
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Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

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Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea
Bovista plumbea
© Copyright Malcolm Storey 2011-2118 · 3
Bovista plumbea

Hosts · map
FamilyScientific name @ source (records)
_  Substrate @ BPI (314)

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California Fungi—Bovista plumbea Bovista plumbea
(Photo: © Fred Stevens)

Bovista plumbea Pers.: Pers.
Synops. Meth. Fung. 137. 1801.

Common Name: none

  • Sporocarp

    Fruiting body 1.5-3.5 cm broad, globose to slightly compressed, attached to the substrate by a tuft of mycelium; exoperidium white, glabrous, becoming buff to pale-tan and minutely tomentose, sometimes areolate; exoperidium flaking away, or peeling off in sheets, the latter typical of maturation in hot, dry conditions; endoperidium membranous, lead-grey, with or without adhering fragments of exoperidium; spores released via a small apical pore; gleba white, turning dingy yellowish, olive-brown, finally dark-brown, firm-textured; subgleba and sterile base absent.

  • Spores

    Spores 5.0-6.5 x 4.0-5.5 µm, ovoid, thick-walled, nearly smooth, with a central oil droplet, and a 7.5-11.5 µm pedicel; capillitium of individual elements, not interwoven, main branches thick-walled, flexuous, rapidly tapering, forking more or less dichotomously, ochre-colored in KOH; pits absent.

  • Habitat

    Scattered to clustered in disturbed areas, expecially in sparse grass; fruiting throughout the mushroom season; widely distributed.

  • Edibility

    Edible when young and the gleba white, but too small to be considered for the table.

  • Comments

    Bovista plumbea is a small, globose puffball, white when young, greyish in age, attached to the substrate by a tuft of mycelium. It is easily confused with immature Bovista dermoxantha , but the latter is differently colored in age, the endoperidium light-brown to ochre-brown, and is attached to the substrate by a mycelial cord. A third Bovista, B. pila resembles Bovista plumbea in color at maturity, but is larger, has a basal mycelial cord, and releases spores via cracks or tears rather than a apical pore. Of the three, Bovista plumbea is the most widely distributed and the most common.

  • References

    Arora, D. (1986). Mushrooms Demystified. Ten Speed Press: Berkeley, CA. 959 p.
    Bates, S.T. (2004). Arizona members of the Geastraceae and Lycoperdaceae (Basidiomycota, Fungi). Masters Thesis. Arizona State University: Tempe, AZ. 445 p.
    Breitenbach, J. & Kränzlin, F. (1986). Fungi of Switzerland. Volume 2: Non-Gilled Fungi. Verlag Mykologia: Luzern, Switzerland. 412 p.
    Calonge, F.D. (1998). Flora Mycologica Iberica. Vol. 3. Gasteromycetes, I. Lycoperdales, Nidulariales, Phallales, Sclerodermatales, Tulostomatales. J. Cramer: Berlin, Germany. 271 p.
    Coker, W.C. & Couch, J.N. (1974). The Gasteromycetes of the Eastern United States and Canada. Dover Publications, Inc: New York, NY. 201 p.
    Desjardin, D.E., Wood, M.G. & Stevens, F.A. (2015). California Mushrooms: The Comprehensive Identification Guide. Timber Press: Portland, OR. 560 p.
    Ellis, M.B. & Ellis, J.P. (1990). Fungi without Gills (Hymenomycetes and Gasteromycetes). Chapman and Hall: London, England. 329 p.
    Jarvis, S.S. (2014). The Lycoperdaceae of California. Masters thesis. San Francisco State University: San Francisco, CA. 336 p.
    Jeppson, M. (2018). Puffballs of Northern and Central Europe. Sveriges Mykologiska Förening: Gothenburg, Sweden. 359 p.
    Kreisel, H. (1967). Taxonomisch-Pflanzengeographische Monographie Der Gattung Bovista . J. Cramer: Lehre. 244 p.
    Pegler, D.N., Læssøe, T. & Spooner, B.M. (1995). British Puffballs, Earthstars, and Stinkhorns. Royal Botanic Gardens: Kew, England. 255 p.
    Smith, A.H. (1951). Puffballs and Their Allies in Michigan. University of Michigan Press: Ann Arbor, MI. 131 p.

  • Other Descriptions and Photos
  • Main Photo
    • Wikipedia: Bovista plumbea (D & CP)
    • Arora (1986): p. 697 (D & P)
    • Arora (1991): p. 216 (D & CP)
    • Jordan: p. 354 (D & CP)
    • Pegler et al. : p. 140 (D), p. 141 (CP & I)

    (D=Description; I=Illustration; P=Photo; CP=Color Photo)

The Fungi of California
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