The most salient characteristic is the weak gills, which feel greasy to the touch, are flexible and do not break. The cap is 4 to 15 cm wide; convex at first and later flattened. They may be greenish, purplish or brown (they vary considerably in colour).
Russula cyanoxantha grows in slightly acidic, but nutrient-rich soil. Like all Russulas, it is a mycorrhizal fungus. It has a very wide host range of broadleaved trees and conifers.
Appearing from May to November, with the highest concentration from July to September.
The name Charcoal Burner derives from the colours in the cap, which can be mixes of grey, violet, purple, with hints of red, brown and occasionally green. These colours were thought to be similar to those seen in the dying embers of coal fires and in charcoal burning.
Widespread and fairly frequent in Britain.
Occasional in the Charnwood area.
Leicestershire & Rutland Map
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Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015