Cap 1-3 cm broad, broadly convex, bean-shaped; surface dry, densely covered with reddish-brown to dark-brown hairs; margin buff-brown, concolorous with the spines; flesh thin, light-brown, leathery; odor mild.
Teeth light brown to buff-brown, crowded, 1-3.5 mm long.
Stipe 2-8 cm tall, 1-3 mm thick, more or less equal; surface dry, covered like the cap with reddish-brown to dark-brown hairs; attached laterally to the cap.
Spores 4.5-5.5 x 4-5 µm, nearly round, roughened, the ornamentation amyloid. Spore print white.
Solitary to several on conifer cones, primarily Douglas fir in our area; from late fall to mid-winter.
Unknown, but too tough to be considered for the table.
Auriscalpium vulgare is recognized by its unusual kidney-shaped, hairy brown cap, laterally attached stipe and habit of growing on Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) cones. Although it is a fairly common, it is seldom collected due to its small size and drab coloration. It is interesting to note that Auriscalpium vulgare is found on pine cones in Europes, whereas we have only seen it on Douglas fir, with two exceptions on sugar pine (Pinus lambertiana) cones in the Sierra Nevada foothills.