Entoloma hochstetteri (Blue mushroom)
Species: E. hochstetteri
Binomial name: Entoloma hochstetteri
Synonyms: Entoloma virescens, Cortinarius hochstetteri, Hygrophorus hochstetteri, Hygrophorus cyaneus, Hygrophorus azureus, Entoloma virescens
Common name: Blue mushroom
Entoloma hochstetteri is a species of mushroom found in New Zealand, South America (Brazil) and India. The small mushroom is a distinctive all-blue colour, while the gills have a slight reddish tint from the spores. The blue colouring of the fruit body is due to three azulene pigments.] Entoloma hochstetteri is not edible, but whether or not it is poisonous is unknown.
Entoloma hochstetteri has a small delicate epigeous (above-ground) fruiting body (basidiocarp) which may be found among moss or leaf litter. The cap may be up to 4 cm in diameter and conical in shape. The cap colour is indigo-blue with a green tint, and is fibrillose. The cap margin is striate and rolled inwards. The gill attachment is adnexed or emarginate, gills are thin and 3–5 mm wide, essentially the same colour as the cap, sometimes with a yellow tint. The cylindrical stipe is up to 5 cm long by 0.5 cm thick, fibrillose and stuffed. The spore print is reddish-pink. The spores are 9.9–13.2 by 11.8–13.2 µm, tetrahedric in shape, hyaline, smooth and thin-walled. The basidia are 35.2–44.2 by 8.8–13.2 µm, club-shaped, hyaline, and with two or four sterigmata. Entoloma hochstetteri grows in woodlands of western parts of both the North and South Islands of New Zealand where it is associated with Nothofagus and Podocarpus species. It has also been found in India. Text from Wikipedia
This species was one of six native fungi featured in a set of fungal stamps issued in New Zealand in 2002 It is also seen on the reverse side of the $50 bank note, issued by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand in 1990.
An interesting aticle on this mushroom: http://www.stuff.co.nz/science/9354061/Mushroom-might-yield-major-value
Blue mushroom stamp issue one of a series of six NZ fungi 2002
50 NZ Dollar showing Entoloma hochstelleri the Blue mushroom (bottom right). It is the only fungi on any world currency.