Wood Blewit

(Clitocybe nuda)

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

Wood Blewit


not listed


not listed


Widespread and very common


September to December


On the ground in deciduous or coniferous woodlands, gardens, and compost piles.

    Photo by Kristin Threlfall


This is a common and widespread mushroom popular with mushroom foragers. It is found either scattered or growing close together (gregarious) but not in clusters. It often grows in rings or arcs. It obtains its nutrients from decaying organic matter (saprobic). It appears mostly in the cool months from September to December but may appear in spring and summer.

When young the cap is purple, smooth, dry, convex, and 1½ to 5½ in diameter or larger, and the margins are rolled under. The colors quickly fade away replaced with tan, brown, and flesh color, but the margin often retains some purple coloration. As it ages the cap flattens out and often has a bump in the center. Older specimens sometimes have uplifted, wavy margins. The cap is slippery or greasy to the touch but not slimy when wet and is often somewhat shiny when dry.

The gills are closely spaced or crowded and are usually narrowly to broadly attached to the stalk, sometimes with a notch near the stalk, sometimes running down the stalk. They are pale purple or lavender at first and fade to buff, pinkish-buff, or brownish as they mature.

The stalk is 1 to 2¾ tall or taller and to 1 or more in diameter at the top. It is sometimes bulbous at the base. It is dry and is covered with fibers or hairs. It is purplish or the same color as the gills when young, becoming brownish as it matures. The base is often covered with purple, downy mycelium.

The flesh is purplish to lilac buff or whitish.

The spore print is pale pink to pinkish-buff.

It is edible. It has a pleasant to slightly bitter taste and an odor, when fresh, that has been compared to frozen orange juice.


Mushrooms in the three genera Collybia, Clitocybe, and Lepista are closely related. Some members in one genus are more closely related to a mushroom in another genus than to members of their own genus. Adding to the confusion, all three genera are polyphyletic, meaning that they appear similar but do not have a common ancestor. The three genera are in need of revision.

Wood Blewit has long been known by two scientific names, reflecting strongly held positions by taxonomists. In 1871 and for the next 100 years Wood Blewit was known by some authors as Trichloma nudum and by others as Lepista nuda. In 1969 Lepista was demoted to a subspecies of Clitocybe. In 2003 it was proposed that the subgenus was not valid, and Wood Blewit was classified by some as Clitocybe nuda and others as Lepista nuda. A genetic study in 2015 showed that Wood Blewit is not closely related to the species on which the genus Lepista was based, the type species. This suggests that the scientific name should be Clitocybe nuda, though the authors of the study declined to make that - or any - recommendation. Most sources now classify Wood Blewit as Clitocybe nuda, though the name Lepista nuda is also currently used by some authors.

Distribution Distribution Map  

Sources: 4, 24, 26, 29, 30.





Basidiomycota (club fungi)



Agaricomycotina (jelly fungi, yeasts, and mushrooms)



Agaricomycetes (mushroom-forming fungi)






Agaricales (gill mushrooms)





Lepista nuda



Blue Stalk Mushroom

Wood Blewit











In mushrooms, growing close together but not clustered.



The vegetative part of a fungus; consisting of a mass of branching, thread-like hyphae, through which a fungus absorbs nutrients from its environment; and excluding the fruiting, reproductive structure.



Obtaining its nutrients from non-living organic matter, such as decaying plant or animal matter.


Visitor Photos

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Kristin Threlfall

Found this morning under newly planted perennial. Purple dome just visible to the naked eye. The smaller ones under mulch attached together.

  Wood Blewit   Wood Blewit


MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos






  Clitocybe nuda - fungi kingdom
Fungi Kingdom

Published on Jan 23, 2015

Clitocybe nuda - fungi kingdom





Visitor Videos

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Other Videos

  Meet the beautiful wood blewit (Clitocybe nuda)
Edulis : wild food

Published on Nov 25, 2014

Edulis forager Lisa C finds and introduces you to some handsome wood blewits (Clitocybe/Lepista nuda) for your viewing pleasure. Wood blewits are a stunning lilac colour all over, have a whitish/pale spore print and a characteristic, perfumed aroma. If you find one, look around because they often grow in arcs or rings. They are edible when cooked well and we think they're really tasty!

Blewits are saprophytes, living and feeding on decaying organic matter. These chaps join the forager's find list towards the end of autumn into the beginning of winter, and so are a welcome late-season treat when other choice edibles are declining with the drop in temperature and hours of daylight and the arrival of the first frosts.

You might also come across other edible blewit varieties such as the field blewit (Clitocybe/Lepista saeva) found in grassland with its bright lilac stem and browny-lilac cap, and the slender version of the wood blewit (Clitocybe/Lepista sordida) which has a much slimmer stem and a smaller, thinner, less substantial cap when compared with C. nuda, often found in close-knit clusters.

The featured wood blewits were found on 1 November 2014 in Leeds, UK. At Edulis we're passionate about sustainable foraging - we never take more than we can eat within a few days and we always leave plenty behind (we never take everything).

Happy foraging! :)

Important safety information:

1. *Never* eat any mushroom (or anything) if you are not 100% sure of its identity for yourself – “if in doubt, throw it out”

2. Never eat anything based solely on an ID suggestion from a video, forum post or any other online source – always do your own research too, study, learn and be 100% sure of the ID.

3. Always check every individual specimen in your collection – an imposter can slip into even the most experienced forager's basket if you're not paying attention... as poisonous/inedible lookalikes often grow with or in similar habitats to the real deal edible species you thought you had picked.

With picking blewits, beware of other lilac/purple fungi - for example, to name but a few:
- the various purple/lilac-coloured webcaps (Cortinarius sp - distinguished by a rust-coloured spore print)
- lilac fibrecaps
- amethyst deceivers (Laccaria amethystina)
- Mycena pura

Some purple mushrooms can be very poisonous - so before you go picking 'blewits' please familiarise yourself with the superficially visually-similar lookalikes and learn how to tell them apart and keep yourself safe.

  Blewit, Clitocybe nuda, no bruising
Ilan Segal

Published on Nov 5, 2013

  Wood Blewit

Uploaded on Nov 4, 2009

Clitocybe Nuda. A very delicious mushroom that must be cooked thoroughly

  Wood Blewit and King Bolete Mushroom Hunting

Uploaded on Oct 7, 2010

More mushrooms: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL122A6E3339A70090

Thanks for your support!

Harvesting a few Blewit, Gem studded puffball and King bolete mushrooms

  Wood Blewits Field Blewits and Clouded Agarics.
Marlow Renton

Published on Oct 30, 2014

Lepista nuda, the wood blewit, Lepista saeva, the field blewit, The Clouded Agaric, Clitocybe nebularis. Gourmet mushrooms, and one for the brave.





Visitor Sightings

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Kristin Threlfall

Location: Edina, MN

Found this morning under newly planted perennial. Purple dome just visible to the naked eye. The smaller ones under mulch attached together.

Wood Blewit


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