The Santa Cruz Mycoflora Project

A Comprehensive Reference to the Macrofungi of Santa Cruz County

Genus: Helvella

Family: Helvellaceae

Helvella acetabulum

Helvella acetabulum

Helvella acetabulum Helvella sp

Known Species in the County

Approximately 9 species in Santa Cruz County.

Helvella Records from Santa Cruz County:

Helvella is one of the most prominent genera of fleshy ascomycete mushrooms in our area. The folded or wrinkled-convoluted (but not truly honeycombed or pitted) fertile surfaces perched on well-developed stipes are relatively distinctive. Gyromitra are relatively similar, but slightly different in color and spore details. Ectomycorrhizal with both conifers and hardwoods, and found with appropriate host trees in both urban and forest settings.

Recent taxonomic work on this group has given us a couple new names for the commoner species in the genus, but the nomenclature of a few of the smaller species remains unclear.

Important identification characters include size and stature, coloration, texture of the stipe surface (pitted/grooved or smooth?), and host tree/habitat.