02 February, 2014

What have you overlooked recently?

This extremely small fungi has been inconspicuously sitting on the garden lawn for the past week, but it wasn't until this evening that I finally cracked the identification. The ridiculous size alone left me itching to take a close look, but it also made me want to tell it where it could go and stuff its annoying little spores. 

After a bit of trawling through the Tricholomataceae family, I managed to bring it down to an Arrhenia species, and a good look over the fruiting body proved it to be miniscule fungi Arrhenia retiruga. Further internet trawling completed, and it turns out this may be something genuinely quite rare; the species only seldom being found in areas of damp grass where it associates almost exclusively with pleurocarp-type mosses. 

Pictured here with Pointed Turf-moss Calliergonella cuspidata (cheers for the moss ID, Seth), the fungi was also associating with Springy Turf-moss Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus.

Being separated from a busy main road by only a metre-high wooden fence, and growing on a garden lawn almost totally covered with Springy Turf-moss, you'd never think it was anything other than ridiculously common. Just begins to makes you wonder what other quality things are lurking out there, right under our noses and yet largely ignored because they aren't considered 'interesting enough'. I know I won't be overlooking any more fungi for a while...


Gibster said...

Wouldn't want to say anything about the fungi (other than well done!) but this "lawn full of Springy Turf-moss", you sure it isn't Calliergonella cuspidata? ;)

Billy Dykes said...

Haha! Funnily enough, I did try to word the post so as not to make it look as though I was identifying the moss in the photo as Springy Turf-moss. I had (until now) no idea what it was, and was going to just ignore it (irony, eh?), but cheers for identifying it! The majority of the lawn outside of these photos was covered in STM though, I promise! ;)

Cheers again Seth.