Xylaria polymorpha    (Pers.) Grev. 

common name(s) : Dead Man's Fingers 

New classification: Ascomycota/Pezizomycotina/Sordariomycetes/Xylariomycetidae/Xylariales/Xylariaceae  
Former classification: Ascomycota/Hymenoascomycetes/Pyrenomycetideae/Xylariales/Xylariaceae  
(unconfirmed synonyms: Xylosphaera polymorpha, Hypoxylon polymorpha, Xylaria schweinitzii)  

edibility : inedible

potential confusions with  Xylaria polymorpha toxicity of Xylaria polymorpha genus Xylaria  

The fruiting body is club-shaped, single and irregular, as thick as a finger, warty, tapering at the base, black (possibly covered with grey dust in spring), without stem.

The flesh is white, tough; its taste is not distinctive; the odour is not distinctive.

The fertile surface is smooth. The spore print is blackish.

It grows on wood, in broad-leaved woods, on tree trunks and stumps, on beech, oak.

The fruiting period takes place all year long.
Dimensions: width of fruiting body approximately 2 cm (between 1 and 4 cm)
  total height approximately 6 cm (between 3 and 10 cm)

Chemical tests : asci tips blued with Melzer's reagent.

Distinctive features : single fruiting bodies, club-shaped, irregular, warty, blackish and matt, often in tufts on dead beech wood

Xylaria polymorpha is rare and localised in the forest of Rambouillet, and is very frequent, more generally speaking .
here should be the distribution map of Xylaria polymorpha in the forest of Rambouillet
Above : distribution map of Xylaria polymorpha in the forest of Rambouillet

page updated on 14/01/18