Scultped Puffball: Calvatia sculpta - California, US.| ©Randy L.

Common names: Sculpted puffball, Sculptured puffball, Pyramid puffball, and the Sierran puffball.

Calvatia sculpta is a striking and beautiful puffball, named for the large, recurved pyramidal warts that decorate its surface [1].

Originally described from the Sierra Nevada, C. sculpta is found in mountainous areas in western North America, and was found in a Brazilian dune in 2008 [2].

Calvatia sculpta bears a superficial resemblance to Amanita magniverrucata, a possibly toxic, white Amanita with large pyramidal cap warts that occurs along the coast. These unrelated fungi fruit at different times of year at very different elevations, thus the risk of misidentification is low. Still inexperienced collectors considering Calvatia sculpta for the table, especially in the Coast Range, should section young specimens longitudinally to rule out the possibility of an embryonic Amanita [1].

Fungi - Basidiomycota - Agaricomycetes - Agaricales - Agaricaceae - CalvatiaC. sculpta