Notes on Gyromitra esculenta coll. and G. recurva, a noteworthy species of North America

Authors: Harmaja, Harri
Journal: Karstenia, Volume 19 (1979), Issue 2, pages 46-49.
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Abstract:  The study confirms the existence of apparently genetic variation in the size, shape, perisporium prominence, and oil drop size of the spores of what currently passes as Gyromitra esculenta (Pers.) Fr. (Pezizales: Helvellaceae). The material comprised a considerable part of the Finnish collections of G. esculenta and some from outside Finland. Three types of specimens, obviously representing different races or species, could be distinguished on the basis of the spore characters. One of these types apparently corresponds to the true G. esculenta, another to G. splendida Raitv. If G. esculenta needs to be split at the species level, several old specific epithets are available. The taxon named G. splendida is reported for the first time from Finland, Soviet Karelia, and North America (Michigan).
Type material of Paxina recurvum Snyder, which was recently transferred to Gyromitra Fr. as G. recurva (Snyder) Harmaja, was examined. The apothecium shape and spore characters give this species a somewhat isolated position in the genus; it is best assigned to subg. Discina (Fr.) Harmaja. G. recurva is known only from a few localities in western North America.