|Inonotus dryadeus on an oak tree|
Inonotus dryadeus, commonly known as oak bracket, warted oak polypore, weeping polypore or weeping conk, is an inedible species of fungus belonging to the genus Inonotus, which consists of bracket fungi with fibrous flesh. Most often found growing at the base of oak trees, it causes white rot and decay of the trunks. It secretes an amber liquid which weeps from tubes in its upper surface.
The thick fruiting body of Inonotus dryadeus varies in size from 5 cm to 30 cm in width, although specimens up to 75 cm have been found. Its velvety upper surface is cream to rusty brown with a yellower margin, and is pitted with tubes up to 3 cm deep which ooze an orange-brown liquid when the fruit body is young, hence the name "weeping conk".
On the buff underside there are 4–6 fine pores per millimetre. These are initially greyish-white but mature to yellow or ochre.
The flesh is soft and fibrous, yellow-brown in colour and has an unpleasant odour.
I. cuticularis grows on beech, sycamore and elm.
Habitat and distribution
Inonotus dryadeus is a parasitic saprobic fungus, with spores entering wounds on broadleaf trees (predominantly oak, although sometimes maple, elm and chestnut). It grows close to the ground on the trunk, thickly attached, and either singly or in groups.
It has been observed in North America and temperate northern Europe, where it is described as widespread but locally common. Fruiting occurs in summer and autumn, but fruit bodies may overwinter and persist for several years, eventually turning black and cracked. Presence of a fruit body may indicate that the mycelium has penetrated and weakened the root crown of the tree.
- Gary Emberger (2008). "Inonotus dryadeus". Messiah College. Retrieved 30 July 2010.
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- Swiecki, Tedmund; Bernhardt, Elizabeth (July 2006). "A Field Guide to Insects and Diseases of California Oaks" (PDF). United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 30 July 2010.
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