Text-figs. 1, B, E and F, and 2.
Receptacula coloris punicea-carnea cum crescunt, solitaria vel subcaespitosa, ramosa cylindrica et attenuata, vel planata vel rugosa: sporis albis lato-ovoideis vel subglobosis obtuse curvatis levibus, 8–12 × (6–) 7–9μ, apiculis 1–2μ longis, subterminalibus, aguttatis vel minute guttulatis: basidiis clavatis, cruciatim subseptatis, 1–2–4 sporatis; sterigmatibus magnis: hyphis fibuligeris, 2–4μ latis, plus minus crasse tunicatis.
Type: Quoin Ridge, Tararua Ranges, Wellington, New Zealand, No. 157.
Distribution: Wellington and Nelson districts, New Zealand.
Tremellodendropsis flagelliformis var. ovalispora.
A.&B. Type collection (No. 157). B. Type plant. C. Subsimple plants (No. 240). D. Young rugose plants (No. 165). Magnification × 1.
Fruit body –6 cm. high, gregarious or caespitose: branching copious to limited, polychotomous at first, later dichotomous; branches slightly flattened, finally terete, tips sharply pointed to bluntly rounded; stem pronounced or divided from subtuberous base: colour dull pinkish-buff, cream-buff or pinkish cinnamon when fresh: flesh tough almost coriaceous, not gelatinous but with a high water content; drying horny, twisted, tips brown translucent, branches cream ochraceous to grey-brown, stem lighter in colour.
Like Aphelaria dendroides there appears to be a wide range in growth form; from the “Pterula form” with slender, smooth, elongate, cylindrical fastigiate branches, with stem approximately half total height; to the “Thelephora form” with flattened irregular branching almost palmate in some cases, flesh rugose, stem not prominent. In the type collection localized thickening of the hymenium gave rise to swellings often just before branches divide, especially towards the ultimates (e.f. also var. tasmanica).
Stem generally distinct, often striate, basal portion whitish, slightly hairy due to strands of mycelium and projecting hyphae; often arising from a subtuberous mass buried in litter or soil; several stems may arise from the same buried base.
Branches terete, rugose or more or less flattened; some plants are branched 2–3 times with branches either elongated or short and rugose; others are branched 4–5 times and form a more dendroid or fastigiate structure, with elongated tips tapering to 1 mm. or less in width; in active growth tips may have a colourless hairy appearance due to projecting hyphal ends.
Spores 7.5–12 (–13) × 6–9μ, shorter than var. tasmanica and broader than T. flagelliformis; white to hyaline en masse, yellowish in dilute potassium hydroxide; aguttate to wholly granular guttulate; walls smooth and fairly thin; shape varying from subcylindrical to subglobose; apicule usually prominent, 0.8–2μ long, subterminal.
Basidia clavate, 8–13μ wide × 50–95μ long, tapering to a narrow clamped base; cruciately subseptate with length of septa varying from 0–15μ down into basidia, 1–2–4 spored: sterigmata stout, elongate, –14μ long, erect to slightly outwardly carved; solitary sterigmata may be as much as 18μ long, while other abortive or old sterigmata elongate to form fine hair like hyphae in the hymenium layer. Old basidia may become secondarily septate. Cystidia none.
Hyphae monomitic, not inflated, clamped, 2–4μ wide, walls thickened 0.8μ–1.5μ. Cells elongated in medullary region, less so in subhymenium. Clamps may be small or large, sometimes swollen or elongated; secondary septa without clamps also present.
Collections included in this variety are Nos. 157 Quoin Ridge, Tararua Range, Wellington (type); 114A, 165, 240, 334, Keith George Memorial Park, Wellington; 49, Haywards, Wellington; 305, Maitai Valley, Nelson. (See Table I). Nos. 49 and 334 with slightly longer spores than the rest form a link with Aphelaria tasmanica which is here considered as T. flagelliformis var. tasmanica. Corner (1953, p. 351), included No. 49 (= Warcup C 49) in Aphelaria tasmanica. However, when considered in relation to the whole range it seems best to restrict var. tasmanica to the Tasmanian specimens with longer spores and a higher length to width ratio, and place Nos. 49 and 334 under var. ovalispora.
Tremellodendropsis flagelliformis var. tasmanica (Lloyd) stat. nov.