The aniseed funnelcap, Clitocybe odora (Bull.) P. Kumm.
Agaricus odorus Bull.
Herbier de la France 4: tab. 176 (1784) [1783-84]
Agaricus suaveolens sensu Fries (1821)
fide Checklist of Basidiomycota of Great Britain and Ireland (2005)
Agaricus trogii Fr.
Epicr. syst. mycol. (Upsaliae): 59 (1838)
Agaricus virens Scop., Fl. carniol.
Edn 2 (Wien) 2: 437 (1772)
Agaricus viridis Huds.
Flora angl.: 614 (1778)
Clitocybe odora var. alba J.E. Lange
Dansk bot. Ark. 6(no. 5): 45 (1930)
Clitocybe trogii (Fr.) Sacc.
Syll. fung. (Abellini) 5: 153 (1887)
Clitocybe virens (Scop.) Sacc.
Syll. fung. (Abellini) 5: 152 (1887)
Clitocybe viridis (With.) Gillet
Hyménomycètes (Alençon): 158 (1874)
Gymnopus odorus (Bull.) Gray
Nat. Arr. Brit. Pl. (London) 1: 606 (1821)
Lepista odora (Bull.) Harmaja
Karstenia 15: 15 (1976)
Rubeolarius odorus (Bull.) Raithelh.
Die Gattung Clitocybe (Stuttgart) 1: 17 (1981)
Cap: 2-9 cm, convex at first, with incurved margin, later becoming flat or slightly depressed, applanate to subinfundibuloform, with subinvolute margin, not or only indistinctly hygrophanous, not translucently striate, white, radially streaked with hairs.
Gills: thin, crowded, segmentiform, up to 5 mm broad, broadly adnate to subdecurrent, white.
Stem: 2.5-6.5 x 0.6-1.2 cm, cylindrical, sometimes enlarged at base, stuffed, finally fistulose, concolorous with cap, fibrillose, at the base white-tomentose.
Smell: strong, like aniseed.
Taste: like the smell, mild.
Spore print: pale yellowish-pink to pinkish-cream.
Spores: 6.0-8.5 x 4.0-5.5 µm, smooth, nonamyloid, ellipsoid to ovoid.
Habitat: solitary or in groups on leaves or on ground, in coniferous and hardwood forests.
Edibility: although some guide books claim this mushroom to be edible, other advise against it as it contains small amounts of muscarine. In European countries it is often used as a flavoring agent.
In the odora variety, the cap has a bluish or greenish tinge, while in the fallax variety, the cap has a brown tinge.
Using GC-MS analysis, hydro-distillation and solvent extraction techniques, the anise fragrance of C. odora was determined to be due largely to the aroma compound p-anisaldehyde (Rapior et al., 2002).
Polysaccharides extracted from the mycelial culture of C. odora and administered intraperitoneally into white mice at a dosage of 300 mg/kg inhibited the growth of Sarcoma 180 and Ehrlich solid cancers by 70% and 60%, respectively (Ohtsuka et al., 1973).
Ohtsuka S, Ueno S, Yoshikumi C, Hirose F, Ohmura Y, Wada T, Fujii T, Takahashi E.
Polysaccharides having an anticarcinogenic effect and a method of producing them from species of Basidiomycetes.
UK Patent 1331513, 26 September 1973.