Pileus (mycology)

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The pileus is the technical name for the cap, or cap-like part, of a basidiocarp or ascocarp (fungal fruiting body) that supports a spore-bearing surface, the hymenium.[1] The hymenium (hymenophore) may consist of lamellae, tubes, or teeth, on the underside of the pileus. A pileus is characteristic of agarics, boletes, some polypores, tooth fungi, and some ascomycetes.

Classification[edit]

Pilei can be formed in various shapes, and the shapes can change over the course of the developmental cycle of a fungus. The most familiar pileus shape is hemispherical or convex. Convex pilei often continue to expand as they mature until they become flat. Many well-known species have a convex pileus, including the button mushroom, various Amanita species and boletes.

Some, such as the parasol mushroom, have distinct bosses or umbos and are described as umbonate. An umbo is a knobby protrusion at the center of the cap. Some fungi, such as chanterelles have a funnel- or trumpet-shaped appearance. In these cases the pileus is termed infundibuliform.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Moore-Landecker, E: "Fundamentals of the Fungi", page 560. Prentice Hall, 1972.

References[edit]

  • Arora, D: "Mushrooms Demystified", Ten Speed Press, 1986.