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I came across these dense mats of apothecia seated

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Pop-up disco on Pinus cone
Malcolm Storey, 11-07-2018 12:54
Here's a puzzle from a few years ago http://www.bioimages.org.uk/html/Stictis_sp_nov.htm

The apothecia popped out of cracks in a the cone scales when the cone was wet but almost completely disappeared on drying.

Apothecia: elliptical in outline, gelatinous, immersed, bursting through split in surface when moist, retracting again as they dry out. Hymenium pale greyish with whitish pruina; margin darker, brownish grey.

Asci: up to 210µm, tip not bluing in iodine, with 8 ascospores in a fascicle, but not completely aligned.


Ascospores: long, cylindric, multi-septate so the numerous individual cells look more or less square. Brian Spooner reports that they disarticulate into part spores c.4µm long.


Paraphyses: thin-walled, cylindric, very narrow, dichotomously branched twice near base, strongly expanded at apex into one to several, septate, moniliform but rarely branched, agglutinated, clavate cells (4-6.5µm diam); agglutination very strongly blued in Melzer's Iodine.


Lophodermium conigenum and Naemacyclus fimbriatus: ascospores not divided enough, paraphyses wrong (as they are for Sticta spp. Also the paraphysis tips blue in iodine rather than the hymenium base)

Probably not a Stictis. Schizoxylon might be better.

Many thanks for any comments.

Hans-Otto Baral, 11-07-2018 13:16
Hans-Otto Baral
Re : Pop-up disco on Pinus cone
Yes, Schizoxylon seems good, but the genus is difficult.
Malcolm Storey, 11-07-2018 15:35
Re : Pop-up disco on Pinus cone
That was quick! Many thanks Hans-Otto.