This pretty little agaric seems to be rather rare. It was found sparingly on several occasions in open woods under pines at Ithaca, N. Y., during October, 1898. Lloyd reports it from Ohio (Mycolog. Notes, No. 56, Nov. 1899), and Smith from Vermont (Rhodora I, 1899). Fries' description (Epicrisis, No. 877) runs as follows: "Pileus slightly fleshy, convex, plane, obtuse, nearly smooth, with appressed silky hairs, stem hollow, sub-attenuate, smooth, white to yellowish, annulus fugacious; gills free, crowded, broad in front, from flesh to rose color. In damp grassy places. Stem 2 inches by 2 lines, at first floccose stuffed. Pileus 1-1/2 inch diameter. Color from white to yellowish."

The plants collected at Ithaca are illustrated in Fig. 24 from a photograph of plants (No. 2879 C. U. herbarium). My notes on these specimens run as follows : Plant 3-6 cm. high, pileus 1.5-3 cm. broad, stem 3-4 mm. in thickness. Pileus convex to expanded, fleshy, thin on the margin, margin at first incurved, creamy white with egg yellow stains, darker on the center, in age somewhat darker to umber or fuliginous, moist when fresh, surface soon dry, flesh tinged with yellow. The gills are white when young, then grayish to pale rose, and finally light purple brown, rounded in front, tapering behind (next the stem) and rounded, free from the stem, 4-5 mm. broad. Basidia clavate, 25-30x5-6. Spores small, oval, 3-4 x 2-3 , in mass light purple brown. The stem tapers above, is sub-bulbous below, yellowish and stained with darker yellowish threads below the annulus, hollow, fibrous, fleshy. The veil whitish stained with yellow, delicate, rupturing irregularly, portions of it clinging to margin of the pileus and portions forming a delicate ring. When parts of the plant come in contact with white paper a blue stain is apt to be imparted to the paper, resembling the reaction of iodine on starch. This peculiarity has been observed also in the case of another species of Agaricus. The species is regarded with suspicion by some. I collected the plant also at Blowing Rock, N. C, in September, 1899. The caps of these specimens measure 4 cm. in diameter.

Figure 24. Agaricus comtulus (natural size, sometimes larger)

Figure 24

Agaricus comtulus (natural size, sometimes larger). Cap creamy white with egg-yellow stains, smoky when older. Stem same color; gills grayish, then rose, then purple-brown. Copyright.

Agaricus diminutivus Pk., is a closely related species. It is distinguished chiefly by its somewhat larger size, and purplish to reddish brown hairs on the surface of the pileus, and by the somewhat larger spores, which, however, are small. 1 have found it at Ithaca, the surface of the pileus hairy, with beautiful, triangular, soft, appressed, purplish scales.