19 October 2008 Hampshire. Photograph copyright Leif Goodwin
Sub-spherical with a distinct broad stem, surface sparsely decorated with small spines which fall away with age, pale brown, inside of head ripening into a powdery spore mass which is released through an apical opening in the paper thin outer skin, to about 4 cm across
White and spongey in the stem, white then olive-brown in the head
In deciduous and coniferous woods
Spores spherical, coarsely warty (4-5) µm excluding warts, sterigma fragments present in spore mass and sometimes attached to spores
Edible when white throughout
Molle means 'soft'. Take care not to confuse with Lycoperdon umbrinum, which has yellow brown gleba (spore mass), and finely warted spores, without sterigma remnants.
Spores and sterigma remnants viewed with a x100 immersion objective. Photograph copyright Leif Goodwin