Gidnellum fragrant: is it possible to eat, description and photo

Hydnellum odorous (Hydnellum suaveolens) belongs to the Bunker family and the genus Hydnellum. Classified in 1879 by Peter Carsten, the founder of mycology in Finland. Its other names:

  • odorous black man's man, from 1772;
  • chicken hedgehog, since 1815;
  • calodon suaveolens, from 1881;
  • phaeodon suaveolens, from 1888;
  • northern black man's man, from 1902;
  • hydnellum rickeri, from 1913;
  • sarcodon gravis, since 1939

Important! Gidnellum odorous is a lectotype of the genus Gidnellum, since it has characteristic features. This means that it has been chosen by mycologists as a type specimen for collections.

What does odorous hydnellum look like?

Only the fruiting bodies that have appeared have a conical shape in the form of a thickened cap on a thin stem. Rough, can be either rounded or angular, almost square or shapeless. The apex is rounded-convex, with undulating irregularities, depressions and tubercles. After it becomes flat, disc-shaped with a depression in the center, and then bowl-shaped, with raised edges. Diameter varies from 3-5 cm to 10-16 cm in adulthood.

The surface is velvety-pubescent, matte. The color of young mushrooms is snow-white, then changes to a dirty grayish with brown-brown or beige spots in the depressions. In adult specimens, the central part has a coffee-milk, beige-brown, brown-red color, and along the edges it has a white-gray edging.

The pulp is tough, fibrous, colored in layers, from a darker, black-blue stem to a grayish-blue top, with a very pronounced smell of anise or almond.

The leg is pyramidal, uneven, fibrous-rigid. The color is blue-brown. Height is from 1 to 5 cm, diameter is from 2 to 9 cm. The surface is velvety, covered with soft fluff, when pressed, it changes its color to a darker one. The hymenophore is needle-shaped and looks like a thicket of marine polyps. Spines are often located, up to 0.5 cm long, white or grayish, buffy-beige with age, brown. The spore powder is brown.

The flesh on the cut has a rich color from grayish blue to dirty blue

False doubles

Gidnellum odorous can be confused with representatives of its own species, especially at a young age.

Hydnellum caeruleum. Inedible. Its flesh is bluish-gray. It can be distinguished by the bright orange stem of young mushrooms.

This species is distinguished by a pale blue color of the cap surface in mature specimens.

Hydnellum Peka. Inedible (some sources claim to be poisonous). Differs in drops of blood-red juice over the entire surface of the fruiting body. Able to feed on the bodies of insects trapped in sticky sap.

The drops of juice look like cranberry jam on whipped cream, but you shouldn't try them.

Where does odorous hydnellum grow

Odorous hydnellum is very rare. At the same time, its habitat is very wide: the entire territory of Eurasia, North America. Prefers spruce and pine forests, as well as mixed, coniferous-deciduous. It grows in the mountains, next to pines and cedars, on sandy and rocky soils. The mycelium begins to bear fruit in late summer, growth continues until frost in October-November.

Important! Odorous hydnellum is a mycorrhizal forming agent. Receiving carbohydrates from plants, it supplies the minerals they need.

If the symbiont plant is absent, then these fruiting bodies live like saprotrophs.

With age, a bizarre network of dents can form on the surface of the cap, forming strange patterns

Is it possible to eat odorous hydnellum

Hydnellum odorous is classified as an inedible mushroom due to its tough bitter pulp and low nutritional value. No toxic substances were found in its composition.


Odorous hydnellum is an interesting mushroom from the genus Hydnellum and the Bunker family. It is extremely rare in coniferous lowland and mountain forests, mainly on sandy soils. Forming a symbiosis with trees, it supplies them with the minerals necessary for development. You can meet him in Europe, Russia, Asia, America, in the fall. Inedible, not poisonous. Has similar counterparts.

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