Pestle Puffball - Lycoperdon excipuliforme

    Alternative names
    Handkea excipuliformis
    Description

    The upper, globe-like section of this puffball is white at first and turns ochre as it ages, is initially covered in soft, pointed warts; these fall off to leave a smooth, matt surface. In maturity it may attain dimensions of 12 cm broad by 20 cm) tall. The underside of the puffball is attached to the ground by a root-like assemblage.

    Identification difficulty
    Habitat

    Short grassland and woodland.

    When to see it

    Late summer and autumn.

    Life History

    The stipe expands once the head has ruptured and released the spores. It then remains intact throughout the winter and into the following summer. It is parallel or slightly tapering in at the base; spongy; surface soon becoming wrinkled; initially white with pointed warts, but later turning ochre and becoming smooth and leathery.

    UK Status

    Widespread and fairly frequent in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Fairly frequent in Leicestershire and Rutland.

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

    Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
    Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

    UK Map