Helvella lacunosa

Black Elfin Saddle

Order Pezizales, Family Helvellaceae

Helvella lacunosa

HEAD FOLDED IN LOBES OR SOMETIMES SADDLE-SHAPED

Head:  4-7 cm tall and 3-5 cm tall; convoluted – irregularly lobed, or sometimes saddle-shaped; margin attached to stalk at some points, gray-black to black, brittle, thin flesh

STALK WITH DEEP FURROWS

Stalk:  3-10 cm long, 1-3 cm wide; deep ridges which cross to form cavities (lacunose); interior chambered; white to gray

SPORES 15-20 x 11-13 µm, elliptic, smooth, one large central oil drop

ON GROUND AND IN LAWNS

EDIBILE, BUT NOT RECOMMENDED

Lookalikes:
Gyromitra – head also folded in lobes, not black. Some are poisonous.

Helvella crispa – it is white

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This mushroom is eaten, especially in California, but be careful – it can be easily confused with the closely related false morels – the genus Gyromitra.


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