Clavulinopsis van Overeem   

Kingdom: Fungi
Phylum: Basidiomycota
Class: Agaricomycetes
Order: Agaricales

British distribution: Several species, frequent to common throughout Britain.
World distribution: Widespread.

Rather primitive basidiomycetes with simple, slender or branched fruitbodies, though now considered to be allied to the true toadstools and placed in the order Agaricales. The genus is closely related to Clavaria, but has tougher, less brittle, solid fruitbodies and is defined microscopically by the presence of clamp-connections in the tramal tissues. There is usually a poorly defined stalk, above which is the fertile portion. The hymenium is unprotected, and increase of surface area is accomplished by branching of the whole fruitbody rather than by the development of gills, tubes or spines as seen in most of the larger basidiomycetes. Species are typically white, cream or yellow to ochre or grey-brown.

Species occur in grassland, including lawns, or on rich, often alluvial, soils in woodlands. This is one of the 'clavarioid' genera used in assessment of 'waxcap grasslands'.

Clavulinopsis helvola

Much the commonest of the yellow grassland species, though it also occurs in woodland. It is not, however, easily distinguished from related species in the field, and requires microscopic confirmation. Its coarsely spiny spores are diagnostic.

Photographed specimen from Glen Finart, Argyllshire, 1987.

Clavulinopis helvola

Clavulinopis corniculata
Clavulinopsis corniculata
An easily recognisable, usually much-branched, bright- to ochre-yellow species. It is common in turf, from lowland lawns to mountain turf.

Photographed in the ancient lawn at Hopetoun House, W.Lothian, 1980, a site that was, and hopefully still is, a good 'waxcap grassland'.

Clavulinopsis subtilis (or Ramariopsis subtilis)
This is a member of a difficult complex of species that probably belong in the closely related genus, Ramariopsis. Careful examination of the spores is required.
They are uncommon and characteristically occur on rich woodland soils. Several of these species have now been found in the Clyde Valley woodlands at Calder Glen by East Kilbride, and around Hamilton and Lanark, though their taxonomy remains uncertain. C. dichotoma may be the commonest of these.

Photographed material from Calder Glen, Lanarkshire, 1986.

Clavulinopis subtilis

© A.J. Silverside
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