Ustulina deusta on Aesculus sp.

I don’t often see Ustulina deusta on the trees where I work. Perhaps this is because they are all generally rather young (most not older that 55-60 years of age). However, given the number of chestnuts (Aesculus spp.) there are in the area, all of which are beginning to mature (or are already mature), there will likely be an increase in emergence of this fungus over the coming decade or three. Of course, there is the possibility that the fungus is already present, but simply not producing sporophores, which would align somewhat with this study from Finland. Regardless, I did spot some of this fungus on a horse chestnut, which exists as part of a longer avenue of chestnuts. Therefore, it is perhaps very likely others are also being decayed by Ustulina deusta, as they have suffered near identical basal damage over the years from construction and grass cutting. Outwardly however, no other tree in the avenue shows signs of overt decay (ascertained by the presence of sporophores).

Time for some images, as always.

ustulina deusta aesculus carnea 1
Here sits the tree, along an alleyway between a flat block and a school.
ustulina deusta aesculus carnea 2
Some nasty stem bleeding and a fair mass of sporophores.
ustulina deusta aesculus carnea 3
Looking in more closely, we can spot both old and new(er) sporophores.
ustulina deusta aesculus carnea 4
Closer still. The ‘spent’ sporophores can easily be crumbled, and break up like charcoal.
ustulina deusta aesculus carnea 5
And another shot. Behind the bark, which could easily be peeled off, were a mass of insects using the decaying wood for habitat.
ustulina deusta aesculus carnea 6
And a final image.


Ustulina deusta on Aesculus sp.

2 thoughts on “Ustulina deusta on Aesculus sp.

  1. Istvan Horanszky says:

    I’ve been trying to ascertain within which Kretzschmaria deusta is active. Schwarze et al.(Fungal Strategies of Wood Decay in trees) suggests that many fungi can tolerate very low or very high temperatures but nothing specific for K. deusta.
    For a recent assignment the question related specifically to K. deusta in winter – do you have any info on this. Any reference/link would be gratefully appreciated.


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