Liver Milkcap

Lactarius hepaticus

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Mushrooms

Mushrooms

By Roger Phillips

Published 2006

Liver Milkcap Lactarius hepaticus Plowr. (illustrated 55% life size) Cap 2.5–7cm across, convex, later flattened, sometimes with a central pimple, margin often crimped or crisped with tiny lobes; liver-coloured to dull chestnut-brown; surface dry and matt. Stem 30–70Γ—4–8mm, reddish-brown to brick-coloured; becoming hollow. Flesh white, tinged pinkish-buff; thin in cap. Gills slightly decurrent; pale buff, becoming deep buff to pale ochre with a mauvy bloom. Milk white, drying yellowish, a drop on a handkerchief turns sulphur-yellow in one to two minutes; taste bitter and acrid, slowly slightly hot. Spores 8–9Γ—6–7ΒΌ, broadly elliptical; large warts, some isolated but mostly joined by thin to thickish ridges in a very incomplete network. Spore print cream (B). Habitat with pine; autumn. Frequent, found mainly with pine in southern Britain, and becoming rarer farther northwards. Not edible.

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