Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Arboricultural Association.

Share this story


#ARBatwork #ArbMatters #EmbraceEquity #IWD2023 #PledgeLessPlastic #WomenInArb #WomenInTrees & 12 Faces of Arb 1987 storm 2 Rope 2018 2024 30 Under 30 3ATC 3ATC UK Open 50th annual AA AA award AA Awards Aboricultural Association Accident accreditation Addiction advice AFAG AFL aftercare AGM Agrilus Biguttatus aid air quality Alert Alex Kirkley All Party Parliamentary Group on Horticulture amenity Amenity Conference Anatomy Ancient Tree Forum Annual Awards Anthropology APF APF 2020 APF 2022 app APPGHG application Appointment apprentice apprenticeship Apprenticeships Approved Approved Contractor Approved Contractors ARB ARB Approved Contractor ARB Approved Contractors ARB at work ARB Magazine ARB Show arb training ARB Worker Zone ArbAC ARBatwork ArbCamp Arbor Day Arboretum Arboricultural Association Arboricultural Journal Arboricultural Student Arboriculture arborists Arbsafe Ash Ash Archive ash dieback Asian Hornet Assessments Assessors at atf ATO Australia Autumn Review award Awards Barcham Trees Bark Beetle Bartlett Bartlett Tree Experts bats Bats & Trees beetle Best Student Award beyond ism Bill Matthews biochar biodiversity Biodiversity Net Gain biomechanical biosecurity BNG Book Prize Book Shop Booking Books Bookshop boundaries branch Branches brand Brexit bs5837 BSI Budgeting Tool bursary business Call for Abrstacts Call for Abstracts Call for papers Campout Canker stain of plane Canopy Climbing Collective carbon career careers Cavanagh CAVAT CCS Cellular Confinement Cellular Confinement Systems CEnv CEO Ceratocystis Ceratocystis platani chainsaw chalara charity Charles charter Charter for Trees Chartered Environmentalist chelsea Chelsea Flower Show City & Guilds Claus Mattheck climate climate change climber climbing code Cofor Colleges committees competition competiton conference Conference India Confor conifers conservation Consultant consultation Continuous Professional Development Contractor Contractor Focus Contractors Cornwall Cornwall Branch Coronation Coronavirus Coroner Council Countryside Countryside Code Countryside Stewardship Course for beginners COVID-19 CPD cross industry news Crown & Canopy Cryphonectria parasitica Cumbria DART Date for your diary David Lonsdale deadwood death debate Debt defra deployment Design Devon Director disease diversity DMM document donate dothistroma downloads draft Drought Dutch elm DWP EAC East Anglia ecology Economic Report economy Ecotricity education EFUF Election elections Electricity Elm yellows Emerald Ash Borer England England Tree Action Plan England Tree Strategy English Elm environment Environment Act 2021 environmental EPF Equality equipment Equipment Theft Europe European Arboricultural Council European Forum on Urban Forestry European standards European Wood Pastures EUSTAFOR Event exeter Exhibitors Fall from Height Fatal Fatality felling Fellow Fellow Members Fera Field Trip Finance Fine firewood First Aid FISA flood flooding for Forest Research forestry Forestry Commission forests freelancers FSC Fund4Trees funding fundraiser fungal fungi Future Flora Futurebuild gardening GDPR General Election Geocells Gold Medal Gov.uk government grant grants Grapple Saws Green Brexit Green Infrastructure Green Infratructure Green Recovery Green Up Guarantee guidance Guidance Note Guidance Note 2 guide guides Hazard Tree Health heart-rot Heatwave Hedgerow hedges height Helliwell Help Henry Girling Henry Kuppen History HMRC HOMED Homeworking Honey Brothers honours Horse Chestnut HortAid horticulture horticulturists HortWeek housing HRH HRH Prince Charles HS2 HSE HTA ICF ICoP identification Immigration import industry Industry Code of Practice industry skills Infographic InfraGreen Initiatives Inspiration Insurance Intermediate Tree Inspection International Urban Forestry Congress International Women’s Day International Year of Plant Health invertebrates Investigating Tree Archaeology Conference IPAF Ips Ips typographus Irma irrigation ISA iso ITCC i-Tree IUFC IWD21 Jo Hedger Job Job Centre Plus job opportunity Jobcentre Plus jobs judgement JustGiving Karabiner Keith Sacre Kent Kew Kit land-based Landsaping Landscape Institute Landscape Recovery Scheme Landscape Show landscaping Lantra law Leaf Minor Lectures legal legislation Letters Liability licence Local Authority Treescapes Fund London longevity LTOA Lynne Boddy Magazine Malawi Managegement Plan manifesto maple Mayor of London MBE Melbourne Member Benefit Member Survey Membership Mental Health mentor MEWPs Midlands Morphophysiology moth' motion Moulton College Myerscough NASA National Geographic National Hedgerow Week National Tree Safety Group National Tree Week NATO Natural England NatureScot Netherlands New Year’s Honours News NHS nominations Northern Northumberland Notice notification NTIS NTOA NTOC NTSG Nurseries oak 'oak Oak Processionary Moth Oak-boring Beetle obituary Observatree occupation of OHRG online opm Padua Papua parks parliament Perennial Pest Alert pests Pests & Diseases Pests and Diseases Petersfield petition Petzl photo Phytophthora Phytophthora pluvialis Pine Processionary Moth plan planning Planning Law Plant Health Plant Healthy planting Plantsman Plantsmans Choice Pledge Plumpton College policy poll Poster Power PPE practice Preston Twins Prince Charles Prince of Wales processionary Product Recall Professional Members prosecution Protect and Survive protected tree protection PUWER Qualifications Queen’s 70th Jubilee Questionnaire Quotatis ramorum RC Recruitment Red Diesel reference Reg Harris Registered Registered Consultant Registered Consultants Rehab Rememberance Day renewal REnvP Report Rescue research Research grant Resilience response results Retirement retrenchment review RFS rhs RHS Chelsea Flower Show Ride for Research Ride4Research rigging Rodney Helliwell rogue tree surgeons Royal Forestry Society RSFS Safe Working Practice Safety Safety Bulletin Safety Bulletins Safety Guides Safety Notice Saftey Salaries Sale school science Scotland Scotland Branch Scottish Branch SDG Accord security Seed Gathering Season Seminar seminars Share Sheffield Show Sierra Leone Site Guidance skills skills survey SocEnv Social Benefits of Trees soil soils South East South East Branch South West Speaker spotlight SRT SRWP staff Standards statement Stationary Rope Stationary Rope Technique statutory STIHL Stonehouse Storm strategy student Student Book Prize Student Conference Study Trip Sub-contractors Succession Successsion Supporter survey Sustainable Soils Alliance Sweet Chestnut sweet chestnut blight Sycamore Gap symposium T Level T Levels Tatarian maple TDAG Technical technical guide Technical Guides technical officer Technical Officers Technical Team Technician Members Technology Ted Green Telecommunications tender TG3 Thames & Chiltern The Arboricultural Association The Forestry and Woodlands Advisory Committees The Plantsman’s Choice The Queen’s Green Canopy The Woodland Trust Thinking Arbs Thinking Arbs Day Timbersports Tony Kirkham Tools top-handled chainsaws,Elcoat, TPBE4 TPO Trading Standards trailblazer training transport Tree Tree Care Tree Champion Tree Council Tree Fayre tree felling Tree Health Tree Health Week Tree Inspection Tree Life tree loss tree management Tree of the year Tree Officer Tree officers tree pathogen tree planning Tree Planting Tree Production Innovation Fund Tree Protection tree register Tree Risk Tree Shears tree species Tree Supply Tree Surgeon Tree Surgeons Tree Week Tree Work at Height Tree Workers Zone TreeAlert Treeconomics tree-felling TreeRadar trees trees' Trees & Society Trees & Sociey Trees and Society Trees and the Law Trees for Cities Trees, People and the Built Environment trust' trustee Trustees TrustMark Two Rope two-rope typographus UAG Uitlity UK favourite UK&ITCC ukas Ukraine UKWAS urban urban forest Urban Forestry Urban Tree Challenge Urban Tree Challenge Fund Urban Tree Cover Urban Tree Diversity Urban Tree World Cup urban trees UTD4 Utility Approved Contractors Utility Arboriculture Group UTWC vacancy Vanuatu VETcert veteran trees video Videos Virtual ARB Show volunteer voting VTA WAC Wales Wales Branch Warning Watering watering solutions Webinar webinars website Wednesday Webinars Wellbeing Western Westonbirt Wharton White Paper WIA Witley Women Women in Arb women in arboriculture Womens Arb Camp woodland Woodland Carbon Code Woodland Carbon Guarantee woodland trust woods Work Work at Height Workshops World Environment Day World Fungi Day Xylella young Young Arboricultural Professional Young Arboricultural Professional Award young arborists Young People’s Breakfast Event Young Tree Aftercare Youth Programme zoo

Wales Branch Annual Autumn Fungi Walk

Author:  Mike Higgins
Last Updated:  05/12/2023
Brown rot present in one of the many standing monoliths at Clyne gardens.

Brown rot present in one of the many standing monoliths at Clyne gardens.

Teifion receiving his book – a thank you from the branch.

Teifion receiving his book – a thank you from the branch.

Mike Higgins, Wales Branch Chair

On 16th September, the Wales Branch held our fifth annual fungi walk at Clyne Gardens, Swansea. The event was again organised by Teifion Davies from Clyne Gardens and Steve Lucocq, Wales Branch Secretary.

Teifion is the Head Gardener at Clyne and is responsible for the 2,500 trees on site, a collection of 350-400 different species. Due to the inter-relationships between trees and fungi, it is likely that Clyne has more fungi than anywhere else in the city of Swansea.

Typically, fungi are identified by their appearance, but advances in DNA analysis are helping to identify species more accurately, and science and practical work are now improving understanding of the relationship between fungi and trees. Social media is also helping to communicate and share knowledge on these specialist subjects. However, the best way to gain experience is to visit sites where fungi can be seen, just like Clyne.

Clyne Gardens is now one of Wales’s 22 Sentinel Sites. These are public parks and gardens where the Animal and Plant Health Agency carries out plant health inspections twice a year. The parks feature thousands of different common and less well-known plants and trees, and the inspections note potential issues with damaging and regulated plant pests and diseases.

Teifion also talked about a large change in the management of trees at the site since he has worked there, with a focus now on the retention of standing decaying wood (monoliths aka snags) and laying larger stems to ground. The smaller material is also retained in the form of habitat piles. Throughout the site this could be seen, with excellent examples of monoliths and habitat piles as well as large, failed trees left in situ on the ground and being used by various other species such as invertebrates, epiphytes and fungi.

This year we had 12 attendees of varying backgrounds from arboricultural consultants to individuals with a general interest in fungi. We were again treated to an array of different fungi, some of which we have seen each year and some new ones.

As always, the event ended with Steve Lucocq presenting Teifion with a book as a gift of thanks. The book was fungi related as usual and will no doubt add to the knowledge Teifion has to share with the group next year.

All images by Mike Higgins

Trooping crumble cap (Coprinellus disseminatus)

1. Trooping crumble cap (Coprinellus disseminatus)

Collared parachute fungi (Marasmius rotula)

2. Collared parachute fungi (Marasmius rotula)

Blushing rosette (Abortiporus biennis)

3a. Blushing rosette (Abortiporus biennis)

Blushing rosette (Abortiporus biennis)

3b. Blushing rosette (Abortiporus biennis)

  1. Trooping crumble cap (Coprinellus disseminatus) growing on the ground next to the Sentinel noticeboard.
  2. Collared parachute fungi (Marasmius rotula) growing on the decaying root of an ash tree. The group was able to follow the path of the root based on the fruit bodies. The root was likely damaged by mowers as it breached the surface, allowing the fungi to colonise.
  3. Blushing rosette (Abortiporus biennis) on red oak with typical form (a) and an abortive form with stunning guttation (b). We have been lucky to see this fungus every year the walk has taken place. It was also found on the stump of a katsura tree at another location on the site.
Common earthball (Scleroderma citrinum)

4. Common earthball (Scleroderma citrinum)

Fluted bird’s nest (Cyathus striatus)

5. Fluted bird’s nest (Cyathus striatus)

Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus)

6a. Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus)

Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus)

6b. Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus)

  1. Common earthball (Scleroderma citrinum).
  2. Fluted bird’s nest (Cyathus striatus). This specimen raised the issue of how different fungi spread their spores. C. striatus uses raindrops and other fascinating means by which to reproduce. The evolution of the fruit body is such that it is the correct size that when a raindrop hits the centre, it forces the peridioles (‘egg’) out of the ‘nest’ structure. The egg has a funicular (microscopic hyphal cord) which attaches onto adjacent plants rather than hitting the ground. Once attached, the ‘egg’ matures until the spores are finally released. However, this is rarely a means of reproduction as two mycelia must make contact, and this colliding/mating on adjacent plants is typically the most successful method.
  3. Chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureus). A mature, pale form unusually spotted growing on cherry laurel (a) and a remnant specimen at a height of 5 metres on an oak (b). The specimen on the cherry laurel is likely to have established due to exposed heartwood following a previous topping of the host. The group discussed colonisation strategies and biodiversity potential from fungi and tree relationships. Heartwood decay tends to be a natural phenomenon which in turn produces beneficial habitat for invertebrates and birds etc. This type of habitat was observed throughout the site on living trees, as well as on standing monoliths/snags and failed decaying wood on the ground.
Suede bolete (Xerocomus subtomentosus)

7a. Suede bolete (Xerocomus subtomentosus)

Suede bolete (Xerocomus subtomentosus)

7b. Suede bolete (Xerocomus subtomentosus)

Beefsteak fungus (Fistulina hepatica)

8a. Beefsteak fungus (Fistulina hepatica)

Beefsteak fungus (Fistulina hepatica)

8b. Beefsteak fungus (Fistulina hepatica)

  1. Suede bolete (Xerocomus subtomentosus). This particular specimen was growing on the bank at the edge of a wooded area in the gardens. The unusual location made it a bit easier for the group to see the yellow/brown tubes and pores on the underside.
  2. Beefsteak fungus (Fistulina hepatica). A small emerging specimen on a failed tree (a) and another on the underside of another retained failed trunk elsewhere on site (b).
Ganoderma sp.

9a. Ganoderma sp.

Ganoderma sp.

9b. Ganoderma sp.

Brittlegill (Russula sp.)

10. Brittlegill (Russula sp.)

Yew duster fungus (Amylostereum laevigatum)

11. Yew duster fungus (Amylostereum laevigatum)

  1. Ganoderma sp. on ash (a) and on a fallen stem (b). The Ganoderma instigated a discussion between the arboriculturists in the group on the difficulties of distinguishing G. applanatum from G. australe. One of the main ways to distinguish G. applanatum is the presence of galls on the underside caused by a platypezid fly (Agathomyia wankowiczii). The galls can be felt underneath as small, quite sharp protuberances. The group noted that the presence of galls is not common in West Wales. As one of the locations included a bracket on a failed stem, the discussion also turned to geotropism, and the process by which a bracket will form parallel to the ground, which informs the observer that the bracket in question formed after the tree failed.
  2. Brittlegill (Russula sp.) is a common woodland mycorrhizal fungus. This specimen showed it is a tasty snack for slugs. It is pictured in Teifion’s hand to show the group the reason for the name – numerous intricate, delicate gills make up the underside of the fruit body.
  3. Yew duster fungus (Amylostereum laevigatum). This was a special find as it is the first time it has been recorded at Clyne gardens. The species is a quite unassuming crust fungus that was growing on the underside of a single yew branch about 1.5 metres from the ground. The weather was quite wet and overcast so it was quite difficult to spot, but thankfully Teifion knew where to look.
Fibrous waxcap (Hygrocybe intermedia)

12. Fibrous waxcap (Hygrocybe intermedia)

Purplepore bracket (Trichaptum abietinum)

13. Purplepore bracket (Trichaptum abietinum)

Blackening russula (Russula nigricans)

14. Blackening russula (Russula nigricans)

Root rot fungus (Heterobasidion annosum)

15a. Root rot fungus (Heterobasidion annosum)

  1. Fibrous waxcap (Hygrocybe intermedia). This was the last find before lunch and is one of the non-mycorrhizal fungi found on the day. This is more common in Wales than most of Britain.
  2. Purplepore bracket (Trichaptum abietinum). This is another saprotrophic species to benefit from the more biodiverse management of the trees in Clyne, being found in abundance on a decaying pine monolith. The monolith was also showing signs of insect activity with holes and galleries present.
  3. Blackening russula (Russula nigricans). A mature fruit body found on site and although not a perfect specimen, it was noted as it is often associated with a parasitic fungus (Asterophora parasitica), although we were not lucky enough to see it this time, so something to look for next year.
  4. Root rot fungus (Heterobasidion annosum). This specimen (a) is a little confusing at first sight as it appears to be growing at the base of a hazel coppice. However, it is likely that it is actually growing on an historical stump or root remnant of a conifer submerged below the hazel. The smaller specimen pictured (b) was growing from the stump of a Nothofagus and the fungi was also spotted during the day on the base of a Cupressus macrocarpa stump.
Root rot fungus (Heterobasidion annosum)

15b. Root rot fungus (Heterobasidion annosum)

Hazel woodwart (Hypoxylon fuscum)

16. Hazel woodwart (Hypoxylon fuscum)

The sickener (Russula emetica)

17a. The sickener (Russula emetica)

The sickener (Russula emetica)

17b. The sickener (Russula emetica)

  1. Hazel woodwart (Hypoxylon fuscum). This saprotrophic fungus is the small black lumps in the picture on the decaying branch of a hazel, making identification more straightforward if you know the tree it is growing on.
  2. The sickener (Russula emetica). This mycorrhizal specimen was like a beacon in the undergrowth. Teifion explained that the name is an accurate description: eating it will cause sickness.
Upright coral fungus (Ramaria stricta)

18. Upright coral fungus (Ramaria stricta)

Hairy curtain crust (Stereum hirsutum)

19. Hairy curtain crust (Stereum hirsutum)

Giant ash bracket (Perenniporia fraxinea)

20a. Giant ash bracket (Perenniporia fraxinea)

Giant ash bracket (Perenniporia fraxinea)

20b. Giant ash bracket (Perenniporia fraxinea)

  1. Upright coral fungus (Ramaria stricta). This was the highlight of the day and Teifion saved it for last. This is an unusual fungus in that it can be saprotrophic and mycorrhizal. This emergence was growing on the top of a woodland bank next to an old fence and spread out along the fence in scattered pockets for about 2 metres.
  2. Hairy curtain crust (Stereum hirsutum). Found growing on the top of a decaying oak branch lying on the ground, it was predominantly in the resupinate crust form, although this species is often found in stacked tiers. The common name comes from the wavy edge that resemble curtains and the hirsutum comes from the downy covering on the younger fruiting bodies. This could be seen on a few of the smaller ones, although most of those on the branch had lost their downy appearance.
  3. Giant ash bracket (Perenniporia fraxinea). Found on a mature ash on the site with fruiting bodies present around the entire circumference of the base of the tree (a). One of the specimens was also sporulating (b).

Note: The white fungus in the image is the emerging form of a different species but it was too small to positively identify.

This article was taken from Issue 203 Winter 2023 of the ARB Magazine, which is available to view free to members by simply logging in to the website and viewing your profile area.