Marasmius siccus

Marasmius siccus
Image Courtesy of Peter Katsaros
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Group of Fungi: Agarics

Family: Marasmiaceae

Latin Name: Marasmius siccus (Schwein.) Fr.

Common Name: Orange Pinwheel Marasmius

Description: Total height 1 1/4–2 3/4 in (3–7 cm); cap 1/4–1 in (0.5–2.5 cm) wide, radially striate, the striations sunken and giving the cap the appearance of being pleated, cap often with a shallow, navel-like depression at the center, surface smooth, rust-orange to orange; gills widely separated, white; stalk 1–2 1/2 in (2.5–6.5 cm) long, 1/64–1/32 in (0.05–0.1 cm) in diameter, tough, white above and brown to dark brown below; spores white in mass.

Biological Role: Decomposer of leaves, twigs and other woody debris from broadleaf trees.

Habitat: On the ground in broadleaf forests; occurring in small or large groups.

Geographical Distribution: Found throughout northeastern North America.

Comments: This small fungus has the general appearance of a miniature umbrella. Like other species of Marasmius, it can dry out and then revive in the presence of moisture. There are several similar species that differ in the color of the cap, but the rust-orange cap of Marasmius siccus is both striking and distinctive.

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