Tinder fungus, otherwise called Ciliated tinder fungus (Lentinus substrictus), belongs to the Polypore family and the genus Sawlifters. Another name for it: Polyporus ciliatus. It is notable for the fact that during life it significantly changes its appearance.
Mushrooms have a small size and clear edges of the fruiting body.
Description of the May tinder fungus
Ciliated polyporus has a very impressive structure and the ability to change in accordance with weather conditions and the place of growth. Very often, at first glance, it is mistaken for other varieties of mushrooms.
Tinder fungus on the trunk of a fallen tree
Description of the hat
Tinder fungus appears with a rounded bell-shaped cap. Its edges are noticeably tucked inward. As it grows, the cap straightens out, becoming at first even with the edges still wrapped in a roller, and then stretched out with a small depression in the center. The fruit body grows from 3.5 to 13 cm.
The surface is dry, covered with thin cilia-scales. The color is varied: grayish-silver or brownish-white in young mushrooms, then darkens to gray-spotted, creamy-golden, brown-olive and reddish-brown colors.
The pulp is thin, creamy or white, with a pronounced mushroom aroma, very tough, fibrous.
The geminophore is tubular, short, descending to the pedicle in a smoothly curved arch. The color is white and white-cream.
Important! The very small pores of the spongy geminophor, which look like a solid, slightly velvety surface, are a distinctive feature of Tinder fungus.
The hat may be dark-colored, but the spongy underside is always light
The stem is cylindrical, tuberous thickening at the base, slightly widening towards the cap. Often curved, relatively thin. Its color is similar to the cap: grayish-white, silvery, brown, olive-reddish, brownish-golden. The color is uneven, has dotted spots. The surface is dry, velvety, at the root it can be covered with black rare scales. The pulp is dense, tough. Its diameter is from 0.6 to 1.5 cm, its height reaches 9-12 cm.
The leg is covered with thin brown-brown scales
Where and how it grows
May tinder fungus loves sunny meadows, often hiding in the grass. Grows on rotten and fallen trunks, dead wood, stumps. Appears in mixed forests, parks and gardens, singles and small groups. It is found everywhere throughout the temperate zone: in Russia, Europe, North America and on the islands.
The mycelium is one of the first to bear fruit as soon as warm weather sets in, usually in April. Mushrooms grow actively until the end of summer; you can also see them in warm autumn.
Is the mushroom edible or not
May tinder fungus is inedible. The pulp is thin, tough, has no nutritional or culinary value. No toxic or poisonous substances were found in its composition.
Doubles and their differences
In the spring, it is difficult to confuse Tinder May with another fungus, since the twins do not germinate yet.
In the summer, the Winter Tinder is very similar to it. A conditionally edible mushroom that grows until October-November. Differs in a more porous structure of the geminophore and a rich color of the cap.
Winter tinder fungus likes to settle on rotten birches
Tinder fungus is an inedible spongy fungus that settles on the remains of trees. Widely distributed in the Northern Hemisphere, it can be found most often in May. Loves deciduous and mixed forests, meadows and gardens. It can grow on submerged trunks and snags. He has no poisonous counterparts. A rotting tree trunk is often submerged in the soil, so it may seem that the May Tinder is growing right on the ground.