Peziza arvernensis

The fairy tub fungus, Peziza arvernensis Boud.


Aleuria silvestris Boud.
Galactinia sylvestris (Boud.) Svrček
Peziza silvestris (Boud.) Sacc. & Traverso
Peziza sylvestris (Boud.) Sacc. & Trotter

Common names

Brown cup fungus
Fairy tub
Woodland cup


Many members of the genus Peziza look outwardly similar, so identification and verification of microscopic features is usually required for epithet identification with any degree of certainty.

Apothecia: solitary, sessile, cupulate, externally whitish, nearly smooth or minutely pustulate, the margin slightly wavy, 3-10 cm diameter, often irregular in outline, eventually spreading; margin incurved, then upright, finally level to recurved, crenate to lacerate; hymenium concave, even to wrinkled or furrowed, glabrous, light brown to chestnut-brown; exterior surface white to ash-grey, finely tomentose to furfuraceous; context thin, brittle, colored like the surface; odor and taste mild.
Spores: uniseriate, smooth, 16-20 x 9-11 µm, ellipsoid.
Spore deposit: white.
Habitat: scattered to clustered on rotting wood, sawdust, or near decaying wood chips; fruiting throughout the mushroom season; widely distributed and common.
Edibility: inedible.


A unique hemagglutinating lectin has been isolated from Peziza arvernensis (as P. sylvestris; Wang et al., 2005). This lectin, determined to be a single-chain protein (MW=20 kDa) bears only minimal N-terminal resemblance to other mushroom lectins. Interesting features of the P. arvernensis lectin:

– hemagglutinating activity of the lectin inhibited by arabinose
– hemagglutinating activity reduced in the presence of 0.05 M NaOH or 0.025 M HCl
– hemagglutinating activity reduced when temperature>35°C

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Wang HX, Ng TB.
First report of an arabinose-specific fungal lectin.
Biochem Biophys Res Comm. 2005 337(2): 621-5.

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