Dark Cep

Boletus aereus

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Mushrooms

Mushrooms

By Roger Phillips

Published 2006

Dark Cep Boletus aereus Bull. (illustrated 35% life size) Cap 7–16cm across; dark cigar-brown to bay or dark sepia, often dark brick-coloured near the margin; slightly downy at first, becoming smooth, minutely cracking, making the surface roughly textured. Stem 60–80Γ—11–12mm; covered with network, which is brown near apex, clay-pink or buff around the middle, and rusty towards the base; robust. Flesh white, unchanging or becoming dirty vinaceous when bruised; taste pleasant, smell strong and earthy. Tubes white to cream, finally becoming sulphur-yellow with age. Pores colouring similar to the tubes, but bruising vinaceous on handling and often becoming flushed rust with age. Spores 13.5–15.5Γ—4–5.5ΒΌ, subfusiform. Spore print olivaceous walnut-brown. Habitat scattered under broad-leaved trees, especially with beech and oak; summer to autumn. Uncommon. Edible excellent.

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