T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Cladonia pyxidata ( Pebbled Pixie Cup)

Domain: Eukaryote
Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Ascomycota
Class: Lecanoromycetes
Order: Lecanorales
Family: Cladoniaceae
Genus: Cladonia
Species: C. pyxidata
Binomial name: Cladonia pyxidata
Common name:  Pebbled Pixie Cup

Cladonia pyxidata is a species of cup lichen belonging to the genus Cladonia. Its name derives from the Latin pyxis, which means capsule, jar, box, indicating the shape of the apothecium (cup-shaped ascocarp). This species is polymorphic, i.e. adapts to a wide variety of climates and this is certainly the main reason for its widespread use at all latitudes and longitudes. Found growing on dead wood or banks.

A description, based in substantial part on notes in Aptroot, Sipman & van Herk (2001), Lichenologist 33: 271-283:
A "pixie-cup lichen" with funnel-shaped podetia tapering gradually towards the base, exterior variably clothed with corticate granules and sometimes also with small squamules, interior with conspicuous, disk-like, corticate granules (sometimes developing into squamules within the cup), soredia absent; basal squamules small, lacking pink tints, margins flat, smooth; apothecia brown, globose, more or less sessile on the podetial margins or on very short, stalk-like proliferations (<5mm).

Photographed Mt Egmont?Taranaki reserve