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Free Images of Fabulous Fungi
Xylaria polymorpha 

Note on large files:  Very large files may be bigger than your screen.  
Right click on any portion of the image showing and chose "save as". 

 


*** Warning ***

I wrestled with the option of whether or not to try to identify and place names to my fungus images.  The study of fungi is done by specialists known as a "mycologists" who have many years of education and specialize in identification.  There are many techniques used to identify a mushroom and it simply cannot be done by visual inspection alone.  Incorrectly identifying a mushroom can have deadly consequences if eaten.

While I have tried to link images with fungus names, I am but a lay person and have used books and images to try to look up, categorize and name the species.  My identification should in no way be relied upon and may be completely inaccurate!

There are many toxic mushroom "look-alikes"  that resemble edible ones.  You should UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES  rely up on any of these images to identify edible, toxic or medicinal organisms/plants.  Some mushrooms and fungi are DEADLY  poisonous and their effects do not show up until it is too late to save yourself.  YOU alone are responsible for properly identifying any mushrooms that you may be interested in.  I have attached names to images which I merely THINK resemble the species.

I am grateful for corrections to taxonomic determinations, please contact me at FreeTiiuPix 

 

Xylaria Polymorpha
[Dead Man's Fingers] 

The genus Xylaria is another of those that are difficult to identify visually and can only be accurately done by culturing your specimen.  Xylaria hypoxylon, also known as "Candlesnuff", are typically thinner.  Based on width, I've identified the images below as those of X. polymorpha.

Xylaria polymorpha is also known as “Dead-Man’s Fingers”.  The fruiting body of this species is club-shaped and fingerlike 2-8 cm tall and 2 cm or more in width.  It is often flattened and fanlike.  The surface is black and has a wrinkled or roughed surface looking as if it has been burnt.  The interior is white.  During its asexual stage in the spring when it forms its spores, the fruiting body looks white to powdery grayish.   

This finger-shaped fungi emerge from the ground with a white coating which soon wars off.  Xylaria polymorpha rises from decaying stumps, logs and buried wood and can be seen throughout the summer and into late fall.  This is a common species and is widespread.

Unlike other fungi this species has a slow, extended spore release pattern.  As a result, the fruiting bodies live for several months or even years!

Most of the images show small specimens that are white in colour.  They were all taken in the early spring and I suspect that they are covered with white spores.  

 

White dead man's fingers xylaria polymorpha fungus ontario

Xylaria polymorpha - 1
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 3910 x 2933  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

White dead man's fingers xylaria polymorpha fungus ontario

Xylaria polymorpha - 2
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

White dead man's fingers xylaria polymorpha fungus on rotting wood

Xylaria polymorpha - 3
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

White dead man's fingers xylaria polymorpha fungus on mossy log

Xylaria polymorpha - 4
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

Immature White dead man's fingers xylaria polymorpha fungus

Xylaria polymorpha - 5
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

White sac fungus Xylaria polymorpha Dead Man's Fingers

Xylaria polymorpha - 6
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

Sac fungi white dead man's fingers

Xylaria polymorpha - 7
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

Black finger fungus Xylaria polymorpha sac mushrooms

Xylaria polymorpha - 8
[Photographed in Southern Ontario in July]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

Xyalria polymorpha Dead Man's Fingers Ontario wild fungus mushroom black

Xylaria polymorpha - 9
Note the top-most fungus which I turned upside down to view the white interior.
[Photographed in Southern Ontario in July]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

Xylaria polymorpha Dead Man's Fingers immature white spores

Xylaria polymorpha - 12
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

White sac fungus growing from rotting wood xylaria polymorpha

Xylaria polymorpha - 13
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

sac fungus immature with white spores xylaria polymorpha

Xylaria polymorpha - 14
[Photographed in Northern Ontario in May]

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

 Large - 4608 x 3456  -  For the full-size resolution of this image click here.

 

 

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If you'd like to drop me a note to let me know if any of these images have been useful, I'd love to hear from you. I'm curious to see if my snapshots have been of benefit to you in some way.  Also, I'd like to hear what kind of images you'd like to see more of. 

 

 

 

Fabulous Fungi

 

 

"The world depends 
on fungi, 
because they are 
major players in the
cycling of materials 
and energy 
around the world."

~ E.O. Wilson ~

 

 

 

"I thought a forest 
was made up 
entirely of trees, 
but now I know 
that the foundation 
lies below ground,
in the fungi."

~ Derrick Jensen ~

 

 

 

 

"Falling in love 
is like 
eating mushrooms, 
you never know 
if it's the real thing 
until it's too late."

~ Bill Balance ~

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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