Milk-white Brittlegill

Russula delica


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By Roger Phillips

Published 2006

Milk-white Brittlegill Russula delica Fr. (illustrated 40% life size) Cap 5โ€“16cm across, convex, cup- or funnel-shaped, margin strongly inrolled; whitish, often tinged yellow-brownish; thick-fleshed, matt, dry. Stem 20โ€“60ร—20โ€“40mm; white, often bluish at apex; hard. Flesh white, unchanging; taste hot and acrid with a bitter tang, smell distinctive, slightly of bugs, and reminiscent of certain Lactarius, sometimes fishy. Gills decurrent, often forked or with cross-connections, interspersed with numerous short gills; whitish, often tinged bluish towards the stem. Spores 8โ€“12ร—7โ€“9ยต, ovate; warts 0.5โ€“1.5ยต high, often in chains or occasionally joined by fine lines not enclosing meshes, or sometimes more abundant and forming a network. Spore print white to slightly creamy (Aโ€“B). Cap cystidia worm-like to narrow cylindrical, hardly reacting to SV. Habitat with both broad-leaved and coniferous trees; autumn. Common. Edible but poor, unpleasant tasting.

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